I've been trying to convince a co-worker to buy nicer shoes, so we took a lunch time stroll today to the Allen Edmonds store on Chestnut St. in Philly. He didn't like anything there and said, "take me to the place where you got those" pointing to my Alden shell long wings in color 8. He was already skittish about moving from DSW pricing to AE, and asked him if he was going to drop $600 on a pair of shoes (that can last up to 30 yrs). He said, "never, but take me anyway." So walked 3 blocks down the road to Sherman Brothers shoes on 16th and Sansom, the only Alden dealer in Philly. Sitting on the Alden rack is a Chukka boot in Cigar Shell. I start foaming at the mouth telling him how rare this is right now. I ask the salesman, do you have that in 10D? He says, no, this is the last one, size 13. My friend says, "that's my size." He tries them on. Immediate love. He says he has never put on a pair of shoes so comfortable. The price ended up being $550 on special clearance. What?! My friend says, "They are beautiful, comfortable, and you say they will last forever...I'll take them." Sometimes the door just opens and all you need to do is walk in.
Side note: I noticed it was co-branded with O'Connells name on the inside. Sherman brothers bought some off of O'Connells two years ago.