The gourmet burger bar Bacoa has through the last 10 years cooked themselves into the heart of Barcelona. They have a solid, yet diverse audience and have built an authentic brand that stands more for a lifestyle rather than a franchise.
They came to us to renew their online platform. We ended up with a complete renovation of the whole brand behind one of the most popular gourmet fast food chains in Barcelona. We sat down together with the founders Brad and Paula, the communication manager Barbara and designer Javi and started to pull the strings of what would become a redefinition of their whole approach, from identity to digital environment.
By acknowledging the community of Bacoa and define its authenticity, we could start to create the environment it needed, through design, branding and storytelling.
First of all, we needed run a diagnostic of the brand itself. Analysed deeply starting from communication, identity and art direction we found the holes in the communication and lack of consistency. Holes that could be filled through a clear direction of art and refined applied graphics. We realised we could offer Bacoa something that would take their already successful business beyond the classic communication and into an authentic lifestyle environment.
“Our priority has always been food. But we ought to renew our image and make it visible to everyone. Folch recognised our needs from the very beginning and marked a clear path for a finely crafted and honest renovation of the Brand.”
Bàrbara Balcells, Communication manager Bacoa
Bacoa’s light boxes displaying the bold letters had become their hallmark. Though, we felt the typography was outdated and belonged to another era. We wanted to keep the light boxes and redefine their containing typography. Galano Grotesque designed by Rene Bieder for Font Fabric was the answer. The grotesque typeface had the harmonic geometry, yet the clean and enduring characters we were looking for. We made a fine pairing with Marian –a contemporary reinvention of the classic typefaces– from Commercial Type. With the 1800 italic version in the key colour orange we found the redefined neon character that would recall the soul of the classic hamburger bar.
Graphic application for Bacoa. Photography by Leo García Mendez
In the era where juicy foodie images are commonplace, we felt an urge to set a new twist to the art direction and visualisation of the food. By completely avoiding food photography and instead veil the dishes in fine composed aquarelles by Jenny Adams, we reached a subtle mood of imagery to accompany the menu and other graphic applications in the restaurants.
We wanted to reflect the idea of the community of Bacoa, the variance of the people and the growing enthusiasts. Instead of focusing on the food, build a vibe and mood in the images that echoes the environment and experience. By defining the personas and their relationships and moments spend in the restaurants around the city we could create the crucial connection. Behind the camera we commissioned Leo García Mendez to capture these moments in the restaurant. Instead if emphasise the local itself, we wanted to capture the sociable environment of the guests –families, couples, friends– all in the warm tones of Leo’s documenting lens. Through the texture and light in his photos we could follow the feel of the aquarelles and identity and create the consistency that the restaurant was lacking.
Photography by Leo García Mendez
The network of Bacoa is deeply rooted in the philosophy of a good life. A lifestyle circulating around good food –always made from fresh organic and local products– and moments created by them. To reach and give something back to this community of friends, families, artists and musicians, we wanted to create a platform where these people are set in light.
Through articles and conversations with the producers, chats with local artists and stakeholders we were –together with the communication team of Bacoa– closing the circle and giving something interesting back to the community. Playlists, recipes and portraits of the local stakeholders are creating an editorial universe enclosing their philosophy.
We created a whole universe around Bacoa that would bring them to new light, stand out from the crowd and address their values of fair fresh food.
We contacted Barcelona illustrator and street artist Sawe to gild the wall of the Bacoa restaurant based close by Plaça Universitat. Through his recognisable street style he brought the diverse lifestyles of the collective to life. Once again to close the circle and engage with the audience he is talking about the process of the mural and his love for hamburgers on the digital platform. In the fanzine–based upon the conversations with creatives and producers– his illustrations are featured as well.
The main aim with the ordering sheet was to facilitate the system, for both guests and staff. Through clear graphic applications, well organised based upon the redefined identity and use of illustrations, we could find a legible layout. The posters, wall menu and other graphic applications are enclosed around the same aesthetics with the illustrations of Jenny Adams as protagonists, all to reach for a harmonic and consistent experience in all the different restaurants.
Treating the website as a platform where we could highlight the values of Bacoa was the big change in communication. With a structure closer to an online magazine rather than an informative website we aimed to always link the menu to recipes and organic producers, the locations to artists and interesting local initiatives. The journalistic content is designed as digital articles blending illustrations, videos, playlists with headlines, quotes and text in different levels. Developed by LLOS with fine details and transitions we could reach a great user experience with diverse stories to encircle the universe of Bacoa.