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Last night in New York, Whitewall and Jaeger-LeCoultre hosted a celebratory soirée at the watchmaker’s temporary popup, Reverso 1931 Café, at 729 Madison Avenue. As a band played in the entryway, passed bites from mushroom flatbread to madeleines and beverages like champagne, wine, and espresso martinis were enjoyed as guests mingled in the new space, conceived around the brand’s first Reverso timepiece from 1931. The party also saw guests testing out Jaeger-LeCoultre's historic watchmaking tools, taking the opportunity to try their hand at etching small brass plates.
Initially opened on November 1, our first meeting with the café was an energetic party complete with delicious sips and musical entertainment by Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, recognized for his place in the musical group The Roots, part of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. The preview of the space saw guests from the worlds of watchmaking, art, and beyond (like the artist and previous brand collaborator Michael Murphy) mingling amid memorable interiors that look to the Art Deco style of the Reverso’s origins.
Inside the café, design elements like plush couches with sleek side tables, sculptural barstools, and elevated geometric details were imagined in black and white. Along with an installation detailing the history of the Reverso timepiece—a horological icon for its square Art Deco body and memorable reversible design—we saw special touches like a wall-hung clock in gold that mirrored the shape of the Reverso, and a special 1931 Alphabet that was imagined for the brand by the Brooklyn-based lettering artist Alex Trochut.
Through November 22, visitors at the café can enjoy a menu of classic café beverages—like hot chocolate, cappuccinos, and iced coffees—as well as a selection of pastries inspired by the brand’s home in the Vallée de Joux by the French chef Nina Métayer, including honey-infused Madeleines, the shortbread and hazelnut Bruit de Noisettes, and more. After the Madison Avenue café closes, New Yorkers should be on the lookout for surprise appearances around the city through December 2.