The Superb Semi-Formal Sneaker


Picking an all-around, good-for-any-occasion sneaker – which once ranked up there among the easiest tasks in the world (just grab the one that smells least, right?) – becomes a little harder when you grow up and actually give the slightest hang about what you look like. Thankfully there’s a small pantheon of transcendent kicks that can hold their own for almost any occasion, such as a (clean) pair of Chuck Taylors or an old-school Adidas Samba or Rod Laver, to name a few.

Our newest and current favorite entry to the field, though, are these Italian imports, the Superga 2750 Cotu Classic. They’ve got style to spare, sure, but they’re not overstyled, overdone, overweight, or over-anything. The pedigreed, though obscure-sounding, company was launched in Torino, Italy in 1911, and the 2750s – it turns out the world’s first tennis shoe to sport rubber soles – have been around since 1925 (so let’s just say they’ve had ample time to work out the kinks). Made of eminently breathable pure cotton uppers and 100-percent rubber outsoles, they come in a couple dozen colors, some also in leather if you’re thinking of wearing them into the Fall. While the all-whites are the bestsellers, we’re partial to something a little more subdued like, say, a Dark Navy. Of course, if you’ve a hankering for a pair of these shoes in Island Green, then we say fly that freak flag, man. It is still summer, after all – if not now, then when? [$65;]

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