Long Branches or Bayfields?
(1) Which looks better with coat & tie?
(2) How does the fit compare?
(For those who have noticed me asking Long Branch questions for several months now, I assure you that I am near resolution. I have a pair at home begging to be worn, but--as this will be my last shoe purchase for a long, long time--I wish to avoid even a hint of buyer's regret. I wish I hadn't seen these (http://www.styleforum.net/t/168002/shoe-damage-report-shoe-p0rn-central-part-ii/675#post_3150719), as I cannot get them out of my mind--or find them.
I actually have both, 11 1/2D. Bayfields fit just a hair snugger in the toe area, but not tight by any means. The LBs are a little more comfortable, with the insole, whereas the BF is more "solid", for lack of a better word. The Vibram sole on the LB is a bit softer and more aggresively treaded than the Mini Lug on the BF, and so better on slick surfaces.
Formality-wise, I'd say the Bayfield is a touch sleeker, and, having less ornamentation, is a bit more formal.
Hope that helps!
(Of course, the go-to answer is "Get both.")
Edit: Wearing my Bayfields today: