When it comes to fine dining, few cuts of meat are as lauded as Japan’s savory Kobe beef, so ASICS has looked to the scrumptious steak and the establishments that sell it for inspiration on a new GEL-LYTE III. Dubbed the “Kobe Beef,” these throwback ASICS runners-turned-lifestyle-shoes feature premium construction and butcher-inspired details, all while cutting a striking silhouette.
Produced by Wagu cattle, Kobe beef is applauded for its marbled texture, flavor and tenderness. Although these are features that are nearly impossible to replicate on footwear, ASICS has put its best foot forward by dressing this GEL-LYTE III’s upper in a premium leather. This quality construction is cooked to a perfect medium rare hue, with just a tinge of pink infiltrating its naturally colored style. The quarter’s standard layered overlay is gone, replaced by an embroidered iteration that traces its outline. The standard ASICS heel counter branding has been swapped out as well, and in its place are debossed Japanese characters.
“19” and “90” are split between left and right heels, nodding to the silhouette’s early days on the market. White leather sockliners match the GEL-filled white midsoles, and the outsole is constructed of translucent rubber. Under this see-through bottom piece sits a hand-drawn graphic that breaks down each part of the GEL-LYTE III’s design — a clever nod to the animal diagrams often found at butcher shops.
You can’t get a choice cut without a premium cost, so the ASICS GEL-LYTE III “Kobe Beef” is priced at €220 EUR (approximately $239 USD) and will release at fine stockists like 43einhalb on March 1.