In this review, I will be talking about the Hoka Cavu running shoe. As so many of my friends know, I absolutely love the Hoka Mach. Knowing that the Cavu was also a new model from Hoka's Fly Collection, I wanted to try it. A good friend of mine who got me into the Saucony Kinvara also recommended this shoe to me, knowing my preference in running shoes, and again, he didn't disappoint. As always with new shoes, we never know what to truly expect because theirs little to no history to rely on for a consistent amount of feedback when it comes with reviews. Then you add in that the brands will always hype of the shoe to sound like the next best thing, you go into it optimistic.
This shoe weight starts at 8.20 ounces for a mens size 9. I wear a size 12 and it doesn't even feel like 8 ounces on my foot. For comparison, I feel like the Cavu is as light, if not lighter to the Kinvara 9 and definitely lighter than the Brooks Pure Flow 7. This is a 4mm drop/offset shoe for neutral runners, so this is why while running in it, I immediately compared it to the Kinvara and Pure Flow. I believe that runners that like shoes like the Kinvara, Pure Flow or even the Brooks Pure Cadence will like this shoe and I have been recommending it to them since I've started using it. When Hoka came out with the Tracer I wanted to try it so bad but it was just too narrow and that was a similar complaint I heard from others. I feel like they nailed their hopes for the Tracer with the Cavu. You get that racing flat feel but without the extremely narrow fit and extra cushion while maintaining the feel of the road.
The upper materiel is very light, roomy and breathable. When I looked at photos I really thought this was going to be too narrow but when I put it on I almost thought it was too roomy. I actually tie this shoe a little tighter because I feel like I have a lot of extra room when I first put it on, but once it's laced it's locked in. I really like the toe box space in this shoe and it actually feels wider than the Mach to me. I also liked the more durable lacing area material that it seems like a lot of shoe brands are getting away from. It helps keep the laces from being too tight across the instep. The cushion is nice with a little softer of a heel and a firmer forefoot. Throughout the entire run, I tend to forget that I'm wearing a Hoka because I'm not used to this type of feel but that's a good thing for those who like to mix it up between how much of the road you feel.
The sole seems to be very similar to the tread on the Mach so I will be honest that I'm not expecting to get a lot more than 200 to 250 miles out of the shoe, but that falls in line with what I expect and get with the other shoes in the $99 to $110 range. The Cavu is priced at $110. I've currently only used it on runs from 4 to 7 miles but I've already considered bringing it for the start of my upcoming 100 miler. This is definitely a shoe that I see myself buying more pairs of in the future, especially since I really like the color choices the designers have come up with. As always, the one I use for the blog is the design I have and I really like how sharp it looks in person. Once I'm done with my 100 miler I will definitely look forward to using this as a racing shoe for 5K's and half marathons.
I really enjoyed the Huaka and now with the Mach and Cavu, I'm really enjoying Hoka more and more. I already know this shoe will be earning a spot in my top 10 of favorite shoes and could even start fighting for a spot in my top 5. I highly recommend anyone who enjoys more of a minimal cushioned shoe to check the Cavu out and see for yourself!