To mark its first appearance in the Only Watch charity auction, Swiss watchmaker Angelus has chosen to play on its name and partner with one of the greatest Bordeaux winemakers. Together, Angelus and Château Angelus have created a one-of-a-kind watch, the Chronodate Gold x Château Angelus, featuring a remarkable dial crafted with freeze-dried lees from the elite winemaker’s 2022 vintage.
Their shared name presents more than just an opportunity because passion, collection, perpetuation, and patience are at work in the creation of both a watch and a great wine. The Only Watch auction lot also includes a prestigious “Impériale” from the 2012 vintage and a few bottles of the Château’s very rare Grand Vin Blanc, proceeds from which will raise funds for Duchenne muscular dystrophy research.
Château Angelus is one of the most respected estates in the Bordeaux terroir. Owned by the de Boüard de Laforest family for eight generations, the estate is run by Stéphanie de Boüard-Rivoal, with whom Angelus has worked on a unique blend, the first of its kind in watchmaking: the Chronodate Gold x Château Angelus one-off piece.
Chiming the same tune
When Angelus met Angelus, two spirits converged around a collaboration. The first is a Swiss house that perpetuates an ancient tradition of fine mechanical watchmaking. The second is the de Boüard de Laforest family, who have been winegrowers, winemakers, farmers and livestock breeders in Saint-Émilion since 1782.
Above and beyond perpetuating tradition, watchmaking and wine share geographic ties that define them. The terroirs of Bordeaux express themselves through a whole spectrum of aromas depending on their exposure, soil, growing method, fermentation style and maturation. Swiss watches draw on a limited and restrictive geographic area, giving rise to traditional processes that ensure horological excellence.
A heady combination
Chronodate Gold x Château Angelus is the fruit of a delicate blend. Its dial has been made from freeze-dried lees from the 2022 vintage, named “Le Majestueux” (the majestic). This powdered wine is used as is, delicately deposited on the base of the dial. These lees alone give the piece all its texture and colour. At 6 o’clock, there is a red gold applique bearing a faithful engraving of the Château’s bell.
Angelus and Angelus have joined forces for the worthy cause of Only Watch to offer a full, hedonistic experience combining elements of watchmaking, winegrowing, gastronomy and winemaking. Chronodate Gold x Château Angelus will be presented alongside “Impériale” from the 2012 vintage. Its black capsule bearing the de Boüard de Laforest family coat of arms, the 2012 bottle has seen its traditional paper label replaced with an embossed 21.7-carat gold print showcasing the bell, Angelus’ emblem. Three bottles of the Grand Vin Blanc, which has never been released for sale and only gifted on rare occasions, will also be included in this lot, along with an invitation to the Château in Saint-Émilion.
A chronograph movement was chosen as a reference to the brand’s historical roots, since Angelus was a first-rate manufacturer of these pieces from the late 1930s onwards. Inside Chronodate Gold x Château Angelus is the A-500 in-house calibre. Its design features the small seconds at 9 o’clock and a 30-minute chronograph counter at 3 o’clock. A hand-based date display also sweeps around the dial and recalls the first Chronodate model from 1942.
Operating at a rate of 4 Hz, the calibre incorporates a column wheel. The self-winding system is powered by an A-shaped oscillating weight on top of a star, which is also reminiscent of a bell, the symbol of Château Angelus. There was a time when the bells of belfries and church towers ‘sounded the angelus’. These invitations to contemplation rang out at 7 o’clock in the morning, noon and 7 o’clock in the evening, and punctuated daily life in eras and places where signalling the time was a public and collective phenomenon.
Angelus and Château Angelus are therefore both connected to the measurement of time, but watches and wine are about more than the hours – they are a human affair.
The Auction is set to take place NOVEMBER 5, 2023, 2PM in GENEVA, Switzerland under the high patronage of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, auctioned by Christie’s.