As someone who spends a lot of time on or around water – boating, fishing, bushwalking, etc – I’ve never found a single pair of footwear to cover all these activities. A bit of research led me to the Astral Brewer 2.0 shoe.

I ordered them online and when they turned up I was a little skeptical that being so lightweight that they were actually up to the job. Also, it took a few weeks to wear them in to fit my weird shaped feet - I apparently have high arches - but thankfully they now fit like a glove.

After owning my Brewer 2.0s for around six months I’ve been constantly surprised by their versatility. In that time they’ve been worn nearly every day and have been very comfortable for all the activities previously described, and more.

Around water they work especially well with their nylon uppers coping with light splashes easily while the mesh tops allow any water and sweat to evaporate. The shoe’s toe and heal drain ports too allow water to escape reasonably quickly. And thankfully they have so far been immune to that dreaded wet shoe pong!

The soles provide terrific grip (even wet) on all types of terrain and rocks, and debris such as sand and dirt can’t enter the shoe from below as it can on another brand of water shoes I own. The Brewers will, however, when submerged allow some sand and grit to enter from the top of the shoe but that’s to be expected and isn’t a deal breaker for me.

Being grippy and light they have worked really well on boats and paddle boards and provide good foot protection overall. They’re also a pleasure to wear for hours on end. As I always wear them without socks an inbuilt sock-liner provides added padding and comfort on all types of terrain.

While clearly not designed as a hiking shoe I’ve been surprised at how well the Astral Brewer 2.0s cope with fairly rugged walking trails. Obviously they don’t provide the ankle support a purpose built hiking or trail shoe will but as a versatile hybrid they can be worn with confidence in many outdoor situations where water is likely to be involved.

After months of consistent use over spring and summer mine are showing only little signs of wear and look to be good for many more seasons to come. Depending on the retailer, Astral Brewer 2.0 shoes can be currently bought online for around $175.

Review_Mick Fletoridis

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