The A-E Chesters are not offered in cordovan (horsehide)leather. The somewhat similar McNeil is, however. The A-E Chesters are offered in a color that some call "cordovan" but A-E style Merlot. The leather is burnished calfskin. I have four pairs of A-Es in Merlot, including the Park Avenue, which I just bought yesterday. There can be some color variation in the A-E Merlot leather, some of it being more on the reddish side of the spectrum, as on the shoes I bought yesterday; a couple of the other pairs I have are more brownish. In any event, A-E Merlot in burnished calfskin is an elegant, muted color. If it were "plasticy," I certainly would not have bought any of them. Hope this helps. P.S. I'd probably buy or have bought the Chester in Merlot, but I find the #3 last a bit wide for my feet.