There is a star at 6821 Hollywood Boulevard with the name Paul Lukas. You might not have seen any of his movies, but at his peak, in 1944, he won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in the film Watch on the Rhine. His competition included Humphrey Bogart, who had a reasonably sound performance that year in Casablanca.
Still, Lukas’s most enduring contribution to American culture has nothing to do with Hollywood.
In 1948, after finding a distinctive Oxford shoe with tasseled laces during a voyage to Europe, Lukas set about to have a similar shoe produced in America. As the story goes (and you can read more about it in Cigar Aficionado), Lukas took his find to New York shoemakers Farkas & Kovacs with some ideas for improvements.
He split the resulting pair, sending one shoe to Lefcourt in New York and one to Morris Bootmakers in Beverly Hills to see who could develop the best version.
Both firms took their respective shoes to Alden. And by 1950, after making further improvements on the shoe, Alden released the tassel loafer was released into the wild, where it earned a space in the closets of preps, attorneys, politicians, and gentlemen with a sense of panache.
The Carroll, from Alfred Sargent’s Handgrades line, is the latest in a proud lineage. The color is antique pine. The last is 19, with its classic round toe. The upper is constructed from a single piece of leather, a nod to the classic moccasin, and embellished with beautiful brogueing as a counterpoint to those tassels. On the underside, single leather fiddleback soles with antique edge trim.