The packaging design for Amelie & Friends’ takeout elements are simple and clean. Semi-nostalgic in flavor, but definitely unique. The design is strongly typographical as it delivers puns in large format. The color palates are soft and approachable. The team at ILOVEDUST have this to say:

West Sussex based Restaurant owners Rowland and Mary Leach asked us to work with them on the branding of their brand new restaurant in Chichester. With 2 Michelin Star chefs in the kitchen and an endless supply of local produce to chose from the kitchen produces some of the finest and most original food and pastries all made fresh daily on the premises.

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Once again I must stray a little bit from strictly restaurants. I found this amazing brand identity designed for an event/product. It’s a good idea that one of my clients a few years back actually had. I guess he never saw it through. If he did, these guys beat him to the punch. Awesome design work. Found it on behance.net. It was designed by David Arias and Corey Gibbons.

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It’s been a really fun ride putting together this handy dandy, super informative book. Now, after about 6 months of development it’s finally available for purchase. Currently available through LuLu.com, but will soon be available through Amazon and other online retailers.

FIRE IT UP: Building Restaurant Brands That Blaze is a culmination of 7 years in the branding and development of over 14 restaurant concepts. It’s a down-to-the-nitty-gritty, in-your-face, and bare bones approach to describing the process, ins and outs and all around theories on developing restaurant brands that actually work. No fluff here.

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Tegut is a grocery store experience redesigned by EdenSpiekermann. The branding is vibrant and bold with bright colors dancing around the many touch points. The entire experience has had the touch of a designer and it shows. It’s fun. It’s bright. It makes me want to shop here. The wayfinding design is natural and organic reducing stress involved in having to find things. Everything down to the fliers with coupons looks cohesive and pulled together.

To sell good food responsibly – this was the principle Theo Gutberlet had in mind when he opened his first grocery store in 1947. Today the anthroposophic-oriented family business is one of the leading suppliers of healthy foods, with over 300 tegut… outlets.

The house colour remains orange but all other elements of the corporate design have been carefully modernised and express the company philosophy: lively, meaningful, simple. The chief visual element is the superellipse, a figure halfway between a circle and a square, invented by the Danish scientist Piet Hein. In the new markets it creates a cheerful and functional means of orientation and is a unique feature for tegut….

The new look will be introduced in renovated stores starting in mid-March 2010. Edenspiekermann has also designed advertising and printed material, and documents all updates to the corporate design in a style guide.

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Grain and Gram, an excellent site by the way, have posted 5 questions with Ben Runkle (Ben Runkle’s Company Site.) It’s a quick little intro to Ben and his excellent butchering skills.

Many traditional, once thought lost, crafts have been sprouting back up again. I think this is due to the “hipster” movement as it has become cool to take on traditional trades like butchering, hand crafting shoes and apparel, etc. Say what you will about “hipsters” it’s pretty damn cool to have assets like these come around again. I find that a lot of these new craftsmen (and women) are sprouting in what I call B-level or C-level cities–Cities that aren’t large enough to be a metropolis, but are cities nevertheless.

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This nods back to when gin was made and tubs and Jazz was at its prime. Men were men and women were women. A simpler time when if you got caught sneaking a drink, you’d be arrested. What an amazing study in classic, retro design. The Landing’s marketing and advertising were designed by Jamie Stolarski. […]

Fresh from the farm is a concept that’s been trending and taking off. I think as gas prices increase, this will become bigger and bigger as it will be more cost efficient, not to mention it’s already healthier and tastier. The Barn is a restaurant whose brand was designed by And Smith. The vibe is rustic with old-style illustrations and wonderful leather-bound menus. The layouts are simple and black and white. These elements keep it classy without going full luxury. Here’s what he says about the work:

An informal restaurant at Coworth Park, The Barn offers exceptional seasonal fare courtesy of acclaimed chef John Campbell and his team. The identity we created for The Barn distinguishes it from the hotel’s fine dining restaurant whilst retaining the Coworth Park look and feel. A bold logotype in a rectangular frame evokes a rustic, traditional tone reminiscent of agricultural ‘brands’. This was combined with eccentric illustrations (animal heads attached to human bodies), sophisticated typography and warm, organic materials such as wood and brown leather.

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Again, not necessarily a restaurant, but food related nonetheless. The branding and packaging design for Burgen, all natural bread, nails the target dead on. The golden colors bring forth imagery of grain and natural ingredients that stand out on a shelf. Designed by Ziggurat Brands, they have this to say:

Burgen bread looked like you needed a prescription from you doctor to buy it. Worthy and dull, it was ‘healthy’ in the sense that if it’s painful it must be doing you good. Truth be told, it’s really delicious and by giving it vitality, highlighting flavour and revealing how it harnesses the power of natural ingredients, we made it look both mouth-watering and good for you…

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When you start talking to a social media guru it’s easy to get lost in the jargon. The epicenter of any social media marketing effort lies with Facebook. It’s proliferation is immense and not up for argument (although some try.) Just posting your facebook page for your restaurant is the right move, but, like anything else, you can always do better and more to interact with your customers. And that’s exactly why you should be using social marketing: to interact with your customers.

Beyond commenting and posting, facebook has other ways to kick up the marketing a notch or two. One of my favorite is based on FBML which stands for FaceBook Markup Language. It allows you to create custom tabs on your facebook page for promoting different items. These tabs can be used as landing pages to do many things. First you have to install it. Here is a great tutorial on installing and using FBML.

Once installed, you need to figure out what to promote. Here are a few suggestions on promoting your restaurant and its features using FBML and other facebook apps.

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I stumbled across this coffee shop design for a small coffee roaster and retailer in Tokyo, Japan. There wasn’t a ton of information on who designed the actual quaint location, but it’s an amazing study in how minimalism can speak so much louder than bright colors and graphics. The coffee stand is simply designed with black and white typography and lines. It’s simplicity lets the textures, shapes and lighting do the work. Less is more and this is prove. Very zen-like.

If you’re the designer, please comment with your information.

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The Cy’s Tavern menu design takes the direction of strong multi-column layout, peppered with traditional, classic shapes to accent various areas. It’s clean and easy to read through. The brand itself pulls from highly illustrative and geometric styles akin to the heraldry found on currency. Great design by Kyle Poff.

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Found this one while researching restaurants for a new concept I’m developing. I like the quick handed sketch feel and the interesting take on the name. Strong reds and warm colors bring out the vibrancy and action. Designed by Kudio while at Fabio Ongarato Design.

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It’s that time of year again. The time when Bill Gardner of LogoLounge reviews the trends seen in logo design for 2011. Color is playing a huge role, much like last year. This time, though, the colors are tinted and more subdued. Beyond that, it’s also noted that the traditional thought of logos is transcending: […]

The studio Hatch is widely known across the US if not the world for great design. Their branding work for Specialtys is no exception. Simple, illustrative and strong. There’s just a touch of classic/traditional vibe to it but stays modern. The strong green/brown color palate touts its earthiness and sets the bar for a fresh experience.

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Food trucks are taking off and they’ve come a long way from your run off the mill dumpster on wheels. Now you can get a gourmet meal right out of these babies. I just wanted to show off some pretty rad looking truck concepts in this post, so here you go!

Food Trucks offer an amazing opportunity to blend branding, vehicle graphics and design. Will the ability to fully wrap a truck (or converted postal truck in some cases) the options are limitless. These mobile culinary wonders have designs that range from janky to luxury, illustrative to typographic, vibrant to subdued and run the gamut of everything in between.

NOTE: If you are the photographer of any of these images, or the designer of any of these trucks please comment with your information. It’s easier that way. If you’re pissed that I used a photo without permission … let me know and I’ll stop the free publicity for you.

Couldn’t resist putting in my favorite truck. It’s also featured in my upcoming book, Fire It Up: Building Restaurant Brands That Blaze.

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Here’s a little morning pick-me-up. The packaging design for Dogwood Coffee Co. is excellent. Designed by Holmberg Design, the packaging utilizes a number of finishing techniques that make it pop. Use of die-cuts and embossing add extra effects while budget it salvaged using only one color, rubber stamped as needed and printing on sticker stock so the whole package doesn’t need converting. Good use of print finishing techniques can make materials pop and give it the unique flair you want.

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