My first impression wasn’t great. The Teva Azure’s looked… apathetic. At first glance they seemed to have been half-heartedly made; nothing more than yet another cynical attempt to grow market share by tossing some flip flops into the brand mix of Teva sandals. Even the name annoyed me.
They’re called Azure, which means blue, but are jet black from strap to sole. I mean, really?
A cobbler’s competence must be at its apex to create a well-crafted flip flop.
I was afraid I’d expected too much by assuming a flip flop made by Teva, the outfit that gave birth to a sandal that defined rugged whitewater-ready footwear, would live up to its hard-earned and well-deserved reputation.
Were, my expectations too high? Though all flip flops are sandals, not all sandals are flip flops. Teva built its reputation around the sandal – not the flip flop. So how would they fare? Would they fall into the trap of mistaking the simplicity of the flip flop for ease of creation?
A cobbler’s competence must be at its apex to create a well-crafted flip flop. I’ve seen a similar scenario play out in the world of beer brewing. Almost anyone can brew an IPA, with its mix of malts and overpowering hops that all too easily hide the gaps in the brewer’s ability.
However, only a very few can consistently brew a flawless, clean, crisp Pilsner – a minimalist combination of water, malt, limited hops, and a temperamental yeast – the simplicity leaves nowhere for mistakes to hide.
I entered the Teva Azure’s with trepidation.
Given my initial misgivings, it took me some time step into my Teva Azure’s. When I finally put them on, the first thing I noticed was how pleasantly squishy they were.
Like a perfectly medium rare steak – just enough give to make me feel comfortably guilty, but not so much as to be shamefully gluttonous.
The nylon strap and toe post are both as soft and strong as silk.
These flip flops were built to be worn all day and all night long but crave frigid whitewater rivers. The all-black styling allows them to easily move from outdoor adventure to an indoor meal with friends.
The treads mean business and provide Spiderman like grip on all surfaces, both wet and dry.
These flips were made to work, but the sort of work that involves whitewater, sun, and a summer of sleeping under the stars. Just like Teva’s sandals, these are the real deal for river guides.
The materials used are of such a quality that I wouldn’t be surprised if they lasted several summers of daily whitewater action.
These flip flops were built to be worn all day
Like all Teva’s they float, so you can find them when you bail in the middle of a class IV rapid. Amazingly, they don’t even squeak when they’re wet. I honestly don’t know how they do it?
I finally figured out why they’re called Azure, it isn’t because of the color of the shoes but the color of their natural habitat, the clean crisp blue waters of rivers the world over.
Now that summer is nearly gone I wish I’d put these flip flops on sooner.