Do you ever get the feeling that brewing, homebrewing, and craft beer in general has become like a viral video on Youtube about ready to explode? In the ever increasing market of craft beer, products that allow you to live the Brewlife are poping up everywhere. Well, I think ALBC is going to have to find out if some of this stuff is hype or not. So, lets get on with this review. Brewshoes: Hype or Hip ?
I’ll admit, I’m kind of a shoe geek. I generally buy some of the oddest kicks out there. I’ve always heard that you can tell a lot about a person by the shoes they wear. I wear odd looking, old school, or industrial footwear. Why not, I’m odd, I advertise it. Lately I’ve been on the lookout for the ultimate slacker shoe. You know, ones that tell the world you are lazy or are in search of comfort via non-action. So as soon as I saw these in the Rouge Brewing Newsletter, I bought a pair. Shoes that had beer bottles on the sole! They promised pure beer brewing and drinking comfort. I was sold! They make several versions, leather ( the Dude ) or canvas ( Walter ), in different beer colors. Even classic cult slacker names!
I wanted to directly order them from Rouge, but they were out of my size, so I ordered them from a different source online, as no retailers in my area carried them. I went with the canvas Walter, in the smoked color. When they arrived I liked the look of them, packaging was pretty nice, 6 pack styled box was a nice touch. Build quality was good, and I liked the unfinished edges to the fabric. I realized immediately that there was no way I was getting these shoes on with socks. They were just too tight. I was heading out of town for a trip and decided not to send them back, but to take them with and wear them sock-less, as any good slacker would. After a few days of wearing them, they stretched out a bit, enough that I could get some socks on if I wanted. Comfort seemed to be good, but pure brew-foot bliss seemed to evade me.
After having them for several weeks, you can see in the picture that the sole has an interesting wear pattern to them. The sole is covered with a thin fabric when new, as you wear through the fabric the rubber is exposed. I think this sole construction is common on shoes of this style, as a pair of Sanuk’s I have is similar. Also, after a few weeks the frayed edges of the fabric start to show some additional fraying, adding to the slacker look. I wore them to work, and after a few days one of my co-workers actually said “Those shoes look too comfortable to wear to work.” Good, I like that. As Sailor Jerry would say, piss off “the squares”. They are advertised with 3M Scotchguard fabric, I can’t speak to this as an added benefit. They are not waterproof, but maybe it does keep some of the grime from penetrating into the fabric.
- Comfort: Good, but not excellent. Total comfort-shoe bliss is not here. Sole is thin, so not a lot of cushion, but good for lounging. Light weight.
- Looks: Perfect slacker image. Raw, frayed, worn. Embroidered Brewshoes logo.
- Fit: Tight, would advise trying them on in person if you can. Might want to go with a 1/2 size larger than normal if you plan on wearing with socks.
- Quality: They seem to be made well, alas, like almost every other shoe in the world – Made in Ch**a.
Overall I would say these are a good shoe. They are a bit on the higher price side for such a simple shoe, so try and find them on sale in you can. If you are looking for pure foot comfort bliss, I would look at Sanuk or Crocs of a similar style, both are much more comfortable by comparison. Brew on slackers!