Sounds try and not finished. Maybe you need to coat it with polish. Just maybe. Seems like the cordovan that Meermin uses has a very different finish compare to Horween cordovan leather.
Unlined leather/suede stretches. Lined leather/suede behave similarly in my experience.
I am 9E UK on 337 C&J and 9E/EE UK on 7000/8000 JL, so my feet is about the same size as yours. Pepe recommended me 9E UK for Ben last. So it does need to be sized up for New Rey?