I could be mistaken, but those look like Taft Saints, to me:
Visually arresting, for sure, but they do have their drawbacks. I had a pair of low quarters, with woven vamps for several years, but maintaining them was more complicated than I cared to deal with...and the shoes eventually made that long sad walk to a local Goodwill Store!
I would say definitely the finest shoes are now bespoke made in Japan. When my clients ask for a recommendation I always suggest Shoji Kawaguchi at Marquess shoes in Tokyo. He is a true master of his trade and lives and breathes bespoke shoes. Pure dedication. But I think it’s a long waiting time like all things in life it’s worth waiting for.I think they might be. A bold question or perhaps only a foolish one. But superlatives beg comparisons. First I haven't personally traded with all the world's shoemakers, or even all of those in Japan. So I'm going strictly by eyeball scrutiny of those to which I've been exposed. And foolish also because of the proper esteem held for the many fine makes of Northamtonshire, Italy, Spain and eastern Europe.
And what do I mean by best? Because it can quite properly mean different things to different people. My definition is simple, the most beautiful shoes, of the most careful precision made from exquisite materials. And based solely upon this description, the shoes I'm seeing are not of the best, but among the best ever!
Now should you wish to ask how you may acquire such, it's really simple, all you will need is $3,000+, a round trip 1st class ticket to Japan, and about a year's patience.
Seiji McCarthy -
TYE Shoemakers -
Yohei Fukuda -
On the hoof -