Introduction to the Rolex GMT Master II Root Beer

The Rolex GMT Master II is arguably one of the most sought-after watches on the market today. At Baselworld 2018, Rolex relaunched the Jubilee strap for the “Pepsi” model. Since this relaunch, the waiting list has grown longer and longer. Today, “Batman” and “Pepsi” occupy the top positions. However, in my opinion, there is one more model in the collection that does not get enough love from the watchmaking world. This is the GMT Master II Root Beer.
When it debuted in the 1960s, the Root Beer was already on the wrists of countless celebrities, including Clint Eastwood. The original model was available in solid gold and two-tone options. Even with its commercial success, Root Beer faded from Rolex’s catalog until 2018, when replica Rolex revived the variant. Instead of using gold, Rolex updated this model with 18K pearlescent. While there is a solid Everose version, I opted to try out the two-tone variant of the watch.
The modern Root Beer features the largest case design now commonly found on the Submariner and other GMT models. It feels very substantial on the wrist and lives up to our expectations of a modern luxury sports watch – a balance of precision and practicality. Although it bears the name “Root Beer”, it, unfortunately, does not feature the original two-tone brown and gold bezel. Instead, Rolex uses black and brown. This makes sense, as it follows Rolex’s current GMT look.
Another element that has changed from the original is the bracelet. Instead of the Jubilee, it uses a standard Oyster bracelet with a two-tone polished center link. To ensure maximum comfort, the clasp features an easy-link system that allows for instant adjustments. I’m not one to make 2020 predictions (RIP Baselworld 2020). However, it would be great to see a version of this watch on Jubilee again.
Have you ever secretly wanted to be the “Rolex Gold Watch Guy”, but just couldn’t bring yourself to that level of luxury? Root beer is a solution. It’s not as dazzling as wearing a solid gold model like the President, but it can still make a statement. The mixture of Everose and steel in the Root Beer gives it a higher level of expressiveness and reads more formally than a standard Submariner or Batman GMT. As with most modern Rolex replica watches, just leave it on the bracelet and you’re good to go. You can try it with a brown leather strap or a NATO. However, it just looks best on a two-tone Oyster watch.
I think the Root Beer shines best when paired with a navy blue windowpane suit and some nice brown loafers. In the summer, it would look great with any polo shirt in your closet. I think Root Beer really hits the mark when it comes to getting more out of a sporty watch. A black tie is the only occasion I wouldn’t wear this watch. This style doesn’t work well under a French cuff.
Look, this isn’t really a hard sell. At the end of the day, you have to decide what watch is right for you. While I certainly understand that two-tone watches can sometimes feel a bit dated, there’s something different here. The tasteful use of Everose throughout the design is elegant and eye-catching. The brown and black bezel brings something unique and “new” to the table. I also understand the allure of a steel Rolex, but there is something special about root beer. I think the future may return to more precious metal watches. This is a great watch that is ahead of the curve. I enjoyed wearing it on my wrist for a month and highly recommend you check it out if you get the chance.