One of the perks of writing about cycling gear is that from time to time you receive schwag. From jerseys to courier bags to T-shirts by the pound, bike companies spend untold dollars giving this stuff to journalists. Knowing that all this stuff is a drain on bottom line, I try to be mindful and respectful when I am the recipient of said schwag.
Honestly, some of the stuff isn’t that exciting, but every now and then some item clears the bar of wearable and vaults up into the territory of real find. Take these Merino wool socks from Castelli. Unless a pair of socks is hideous in appearance or so coarse as to be uncomfortable (both happen), they are likely to make it into my rotation. I’ve got so many pairs of socks I could go a month—maybe more—and not worry about dirty socks.
These are part of the Garmin-Cervelo kit, which explains the Garmin blue at the back of the sock, as shown above.
They are thinner than most wool socks, making them perfect for warm weather and come in three sizes, so unlike some socks, these actually came in a size that fit my foot. Perhaps their best feature is that they are available as part of Castelli’s Service Course custom clothing program. The only possible knock against the sock is that it has pilled a bit since these images were taken.
When it comes to great cycling clothing, touting the benefits of Assos can at times be a bit like shooting apples in a barrel—it’s that easy. The reason I do review Assos products is to show just how good a piece of apparel can be.
For reasons I can’t explain, Castelli doesn’t seem to receive the respect it deserves. This sock is a perfect example of just how good Castelli’s clothing is. Given that their stuff is noticeably less expensive than Assos’ and yet usually significantly better than anything offered by their similarly priced competitors, I can’t fathom why their stuff isn’t more popular.
Just to be super-explicit about this: When it comes to custom clothing, they are in the top three of all the clothing I’ve ever worn. These socks are a perfect example of the company’s attention to detail.