Grandson reinterpret Gaelic symbols in their locally-sourced identity for Irish taproom Mo Chara
Irish town Dundalk’s first taproom Mo Chara encourages friendship and unity, being the dream product of three childhood friends. In keeping with the name, which means ‘my friend’ in Gaelic, the pub has been bringing good beer and good times to the local people since its opening, including local design studio Grandson; the team responsible for Mo Chara’s striking identity.
Their solution translates the commutative sense of unity into graphic form with a pint-inspired reinterpretation of the Celtic symbol for friendship – which sees the three founders represented beer-in-hand. The identity is itself a united harmony between illustration, typography and tactility; upholding the charm, impact and emotive resonance of physical brand applications.
These tactile touch points include the pub’s numerous hand-painted signs, murals and illustrations, as well as the high-end printing methods used across the taproom’s cards, coasters and aprons – all rendered in the brand’s Ale (Red Oxide), Stout (Brown) and Cream colours. “This was based on the beers stocked,” Grandson’s Creative Director Killian Walsh tells us, “as well as the red brick on the facade, which is synonymous with the local brewery in Dundalk,” he adds, a feature seen across lots of the houses and pubs in the town.
Tying together the brand’s Grecian-inspired illustrative elements is the impactful use of Lydian as the identity’s primary typeface, the humanist calligraphic characteristics of which are sympathetic to the architectural features of the taproom. Conscious of not becoming pastiche – and more reminiscent of an Irish tourism spot than a local haunt – the typography is applied with contemporary sensibilities; keeping things simple, accessible and impactful.