Some watches make an impression at a distance, but not the A. Lange & Söhne Cabaret Tourbillon Handwerkskunst. The name and form itself are telling, yet even those who can guess what it is will be left flabbergasted by its hidden delights.
The Cabaret Tourbillon Handwerkskunst features an impressive one-minute tourbillon at 6 o’clock, which announces itself with great fanfare. Tourbillon wristwatches are still very much statement pieces, after all. Those familiar with A. Lange & Söhne will know that the manufacture made quite the impression for itself when the Cabaret Tourbillon debuted in 2008. It was the first time a tourbillon mechanism had been equipped with a stop-seconds feature.
In typical A. Lange & Söhne style, this was done to allow the time to be set precisely. Normally, the tourbillon cannot be paused, unless it stops completely due to the mainspring being wound down. This technical feat is not why the Cabaret Tourbillon Handwerkskunst is too much watch for an article of this size.
A mere 500 words cannot get into what really makes this timepiece tick, so we have to do what this watch does not: cut corners. Just as you see in the accompanying visuals, the real secret is on show on the three-part white gold dial, but also on the movement. We are talking about the lozenge-style design in the centre of the dial, and also on the tourbillon and intermediate wheel cocks.
Even in the close-up, we have of the dial, you cannot really tell that this pattern was done entirely by hand. The Handwerkskunst part of the name will calmly inform your brain that every technique here is done by hand, but the uniformity of the pattern will make you gasp in disbelief.
Indeed, A. Lange & Söhne has achieved every detail in this engraving with traditional techniques — no machine created the impossibly straight lines. We imagine that the way the diamond shapes appear must have made this exceedingly difficult — the slightest error would ruin the entire effect. This is exceptional watchmaking, and only to be expected from a Handwerkskunst model from A. Lange & Söhne.
The A. Lange & Söhne Cabaret Tourbillon Handwerkskunst is the seventh such Handwerkskunst model, but it is nothing at all like its antecedents. For one thing, the manufacture has opted to resurrect the rectangular form of the now-discontinued Cabaret line for this.
In a way, it makes sense here as the lines of the case, bezel and lugs all come together in an inimitable way. Still, this is a form watch and will not appeal to everyone. Perhaps the lozenge motif will make it to one of the round models, but we think it will not be as beautiful. The Cabaret Tourbillon Handwerkskunst is limited to 30 pieces so the chances of getting one are slim.
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