Established by Australian chef Brad Ainsworth in 2011, Bacoa is the catch-all brand name for a small group of three gourmet burger joints in Barcelona. The first one, Kiosko, was opened in 2011 when Ainsworth was trying to sell the location of his previous restaurant, Wushu, and decided to spruce up the space with a burger joint and attract some buyers. Instead he attracted a lot of followers. Later, he opened Bacoa, another small outpost, which is now known as Little Bacoa in lieu of its new flagship restaurant, Bacoa Universitat. Looking to possibly expand into a franchise, Bacoa has been working with a new identity since mid-2013 with Barcelona-based TwoPoints.Net who also completed the redesign of the original Kiosk in the same style and approach.
One of the biggest influences were the typical spanish bars from Barcelona. Usually they were build in the seventies. They often use condensed sans-serif typefaces, cut out of acrylic glass. The color scheme of these bars is very limited. Usually the boards, napkins and doilies are only printed in two colors, red and blue. We also tried to embrace the sometimes amateurish design, which gives a typical spanish bar it’s own charm.
The wordmark Bacoa can be written in different ways. Em dashes are used to add spaces in between letters. The flexible use of the wordmark allowed us to maintain simple typographic solutions without becoming repetitive.
We also played with the visual expression of the pronounciation of words, like for example “SO GOOOOOD”. We used this way of spelling on t-shirts and napkins.
At first glance the logo and identity appear to be another trendy European project with the clunky typography and weird lines. (See more of such here). But looking at the extent of the work and the execution, there is a clear, positive distinction between Bacoa’s identity and the rest. The custom font, the limited color palette, the consistent spacing/non-spacing, the application in the restaurant: everything has a graphic sophistication that makes it stand out.
The location of the burger bar is very central. It is just in between Plaça Catalunya and Plaça Universitat, but still belongs to the Eixample, a district which was build at the end 19th century and the begining of the 20th century. All the flats, stores and restaurants in that district have a similar shape. They are not very wide, but very deep. This was a challenge. We had to think of a way to make the pedestrians stop and look inside. We tried to achieve this by using a lot of light sources at the end of the restaurant.
It’s also clear that the designers had a jolly good time designing the identity and bringing it to life, being careful but also exuding a carefree attitude with all the typographic play in the posters and other materials.