I've never seen anything like that monstrosity at the NYC store, but I think they are decent. They used to be all blake stitched and therefore overpriced ($450-ish) at retail, when you'd be better off with Gravati. Recently, however, they've introduced several goodyear welted models that are a good deal on sale. Last month, I bought an elegant chocolate brown goodyear-welted wholecut with channeled soles for $279. If you're not trying them on in person, know that they run at least 1/2 size large. That said, stay away from the "FLEXA" line.