Branding a Restaurant: Chen Design Associates

Palo Alto, California’s Lure + Till, a restaurant and bar located at the base of The Epiphany Hotel that partners with local farmers, foragers and fishermen, calls itself “the go-to restaurant for the modern pioneer,” so it needed an identity that would inspire diners to embrace that spirit of exploration. Perhaps it’s necessary that designers, too, be led by the promise of discovery, especially when they’re among the first to set off for the great unknown in the culinary landscape, which is to say, when they’re branding a restaurant or branding a bar.

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Restaurant Branding

Creative Director: Joshua C. Chen
Art Directors: Jon Campbell, Joshua C. Chen
Designers: Ryan Bosse, Jon Campbell
Client: Joie de Vivre Hospitality

Chen Design Associates did just that when developing an identity for Lure + Till, which has an overall relaxed, hip atmosphere, with indoor-outdoor seating and an ever-evolving menu edited by executive chef Patrick Kelly. CDA wanted the restaurant and bar’s branding to work well with the concept of The Epiphany Hotel, which very much represents the “casual entrepreneurial spirit of Silicon Valley,” according to CDA.

“We had a very short timeline; however, the client (and physical space) were wide open on the multiple directions it could go,” says Jon Campbell, design director. “We didn’t have a shortage of ideas, but did need to reign in our designs and solidify concepts quickly. It was a fun exercise to build out such a fun eclectic brand.”

CDA created custom, wood-carved boards with a banded menu system, plus a clipboard-style check presenter, coasters and matchboxes, as well as business system and web splash page. The splash page is simple and alluring—certainly fitting for a restaurant that touts an “intimate, casual setting.”

CDA notes that the best part of the project was that the client was open-minded and trusting—though CDA reports in good humor that they’ve still not eaten at Lure + Till.

Lorenz Maurer, general manager at The Epiphany, has nothing but great things to say about the branding: “Isn’t it great looking? People love the branding. It suits us really well—and the restaurant has been a huge success.”

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Kelly, who’s formerly worked at Gitane in San Francisco, Angèle in Napa, and La Folie in San Francisco, certainly agrees:

“It’s a renaissance for the area, for Silicon Valley. Conceptually with the food, we’re going to be taking advantage of the local purveyors out here, with a nice fluid menu that changes as much as it can.”2014_international_sept15_web_ads_300x190

If you’re in the area, stop by Lure + Till to drool over their logo, gaze at their coasters and generally admire CDA’s work—and then grab a few craft cocktails and culinary delights from their seasonal, locally-sourced menu

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