Beef and broccoli is a staple dish in Chinese restaurants that was likely invented by immigrants to adapt to local tastes. The combination of green and brown bore an uncanny resemblance to Timberland’s Field Boot, a hunting shoe turned street staple, especially in New York. In the years since, the colour combo has inspired countless sneakers – some directly referencing Timberland, while others have been purely coincidental. Get a taste of ‘Beef and Broccoli’ with these shoes that best express the scrumptious pairing.
Timberland Field Boot
Timberland become a street staple in New York during the 1990s after the Newmarket work boot company opened up in the Upper East Side in 1989. At some point in time, it seems the Field Boot and a takeaway container of beef and broccoli were in the same room, and someone made the visual connection. The nickname stuck, and Timberland have revisited the colourway many times with both their inline offerings and collaborative efforts.
Bobbito Garcia x Nike Air Force 1 High ‘Beef and Broccoli’
NYC basketball, music and sneaker historian Bobbito Garcia collaborated with Nike back in 2007 on a duo of Air Force 1 Highs as part of the ‘Winter Pack’, which unashamedly drew inspiration from Timberland’s classic 6-Inch Boot and Field Boot. The latter was nicknamed the ‘Beef and Broccoli’, due to its brown and green combo, and again was a direct nod to the classic colourway. There was also an Air Force 1 Low that released a few years later in a similar combo.,
Aimé Leon Dore x New Balance 993
There’s a bit of a correlation between New York entities and ‘Beef and Broccoli’ colourways. Aimé Leon Dore continued the trend with their New Balance 993 collaboration that they unveiled in their Fall/Winter 2021 lookbook on the feet of Action Bronson. They’re brown with green accents and black soles – effectively the Field Boot’s iconic colourway but in jogger form. One punter even added, in their own words, ‘extra MSG to the Beef and Broccoli’ by installing D-ring eyelets to their pair!
Pass~Port x Nike SB Dunk High ‘Workboot’
In a recent interview with Pass~Port founder Trent Evans on the Australian skate brand’s new Nike SB Dunk High collaboration, he claimed to be ‘not much of a sneakerhead’. However, given the green-heavy colourway with a splash of brown – plus the fact the colab was nicknamed ‘Workboot’, perhaps there was some subconscious influence from the Timberland classic. The fact that the upper eyelet flaps also feature metal D-rings create a strong correlation to the Field Boot.
Vans Half Cab ‘Beef and Broccoli’
The Vans Half Cab is a skate essential, and it turns out an essential Chinese-American dish has also found itself on the shoe. This nubuck and canvas take is hard-wearing, reliable, and, in a good way, predictable. Which is what one probably wants when ordering the meal too.
JJJJound x Danner Feather Light
Tumblr moderator turned moodboard brand mogul JJJJound are no stranger to dredging up archival designs and reworking them with IYKYK references. The Danner Feather Light is a bit of an ‘I’m not like the other guys’ flex in heritage hiking boot circles, which meets JJJJound’s perceived obscurity. Plus, the brown suede upper with green waxed canvas inserts is too on the nose to be anything but a nod to the Field Boot.
Learn more about the story behind your favourite sneaker shades in the Colourway Corral section.