New spring/summer all-rounder with sleek continental looks from Brasher.
Newly arrived and just in time for the balmy spring weather we're confidently expecting, ahem, is the new Brasher Tour GTX, a sort of light-ish - 900g per pair - walking shoe with a slightly continental styling vibe going on.
'Designed Around The Natural Shape of your Foot'
Brasher says the Tour GTX is designed for 'travelling, low level trails and everyday leisure use' and that it's 'uniquely designed around the natural shape of your foot', so if you're after some sort of foot-trashing ballet pump, you'll be looking elsewhere.
What we think they're trying to say is that the shoe's designed to give a classically generous Brasher fit and comfort and quick try on suggests that while there's still plenty of forefoot space - maybe a little sleeker than before - the heel shape is a tad narrower than some past Brasher shoes, which we found sloppy. It's still a little more generous than some, but there's a bit less volume than before. Which is good, we think.
Construction uses all the latest tricks, which means Memory Foam in the collar and tongue, a Gore-Tex waterproof breathable liner under the suede and mesh uppers and a footbed which incorporates 'anatomically positioned gel inserts' at strategic points for comfier walking and, it says here, 'promoting the foot's natural rolling action'.
Underfoot things are pretty flexible with minimal cushioning and a Brasher own-brand 'Travel Active' outsole which has blocky, but shallow tread that looks like it'll work best on drier trails and hard terrain. Not much cushioning there, which means the footbed is doubly important. One thing that might surprise you for a 'travel' shoe is the reinforcemend toe - Salomonesque cosmetics here - and heel areas along with a strip along the outside of the foot for abrasion resistance.
We reckon these'll make nice, lightish, spring/summer, all-round walking shoes either at home or abroad. Not quite as padded underfoot as running-type, EVA mid-soled, but stable and closer to the ground as a result and, in our book anyway, a better fit than previous Brasher shoes we've tried and comfortable straight out of the box.
And they do look quite nicely modern and, well, continental too. There are men's and women's specific versions, both are in the shops now and retail for £120.
More information at www.brasher.co.uk.