I was quite fascinated by the incomparable Mr. Pollock's (Wish I could be more like him!
assigning of relative values to high-grade shoes earlier in this thread. However, I think he raises the bar a bit high for Allen-Edmonds, which he uses as the benchmark for his ratings. Even if we leave out the seconds and closeouts available at the outlet stores, Nordstroms usually sells several of the $285-list A-Es at $189 during their sales(these are presumably firsts), and I am sure similar bargains are available from other sources. I don't mean to come across as a shill for Allen-Edmonds, but when it comes to the relationship of quality to price, they are very, very hard to beat. Of course, if you are one of those fortunate individuals for whom a $500 or $600 price differential is a mere bagatelle, then this is of no consequence. However, for those of us working stiffs who have to cultivate elegance with economy (to paraphrase Pericles), I don't know of an attractive alternative to Allen-Edmonds.