It’s almost a symbolic rite of passage, the messenger. As a boy you’ve got your trusty backpack, filled with indispensable necessities like peanut butter sandwiches, Hot Wheels and maybe some homework. As a man, you might have passed that pack down and taken up a new method for carrying the tools that you need in life, and for many guys that is the quintessential messenger. Buffalo Jackson’s Denver Laptop Messenger Bag is one such example, and we’ll take a look to see if it merits such a respected position in your life.
The leather used is semi vegetable tanned, top grain cow leather. This gives it a smooth finish with a nice pull up. The bag is manufactured in Mexico. The leather is definitely on the thick side, so you will have to work at it before it rewards you with pliability. I would have liked to have seen double stitched rows along some of the leather panels, especially the bottom.
Antique brass hardware is used throughout including the shoulder strap D rings and handle strap. A turn lock closure secures the main flap over the interior compartments and the back side features a zippered slotted pocket. The interior lining is soft suede which is a forgiving surface for delicate electronics. The dimensions are 16″ L x 11″ H x 4″ W and the bag weighs in at just under 5 lbs.
The Denver has no problem executing its purpose in carrying your laptop. The thick leather in conjunction with the padded interior shields your laptop from bumps and drops. Light rain is no issue and the flap closure of the bag means quick and efficient retrieval. Probably my favorite aspect is that the bag is self standing and with the orientation of the pockets, sitting down and bending to get items is a breeze. As the bag continues to break in, it might not stand as well but then you’re rewarded with a more comfortable carry as it will be less rigid. Adjustable shoulder strap provides a great fit and the metal D rings that attach the straps are ideal for attaching carabiner key chains. With a laptop in the bag I was still able to fit in a bag lunch, light sweater and water. The Denver definitely functions as well as any messenger.
This is a good looking bag, no doubt. It has that effortless Paul Newman vibe of exuding cool without trying. Some bags seem to yell, “Look at me, I’m from an overpriced designer!” Whereas the Denver is appreciated in a more subtle manner. The bag for me at least, teeters on the edge of casual business. I see it as a great looking option for students or those who need a carry option that can transition from the field to the office. The brass trimmings are what really do it for me, they give the bag a rustic, rugged vibe. The leather is very prone to scuffs which in and of itself is not really a bad thing as it adds character over time.
Buffalo Jackson’s Denver Messenger is a solid bag, inside and out. The materials are durable and the craftsmanship shines. The 299.99 price point is about ballpark for bags in this quality range. I particularly like the rugged aspects of the bag and the adventure vibe I get from it. If you’re the type that likes to buy the best and only cry once, I’d tell you to consider the Denver.