Smörgåsbord crafts an identity for LOT61 Coffee Roasters that’s firmly rooted in Amsterdam
Born in Sydney. Raised in Brooklyn. Roasting in Amsterdam. A tagline created by Amsterdam-and-Cardiff-based design studio Smörgåsbord for LOT61, a coffee roastery also based in Amsterdam. To stand out against the saturated market of coffee roasters, Smörgåsbord’s identity for LOT61 aims to be classic but also bold in its design in order to remain competitive.
Beginning with a fresh logotype, Smörgåsbord was inspired by the locally-renowned Amsterdam School of Architecture that rose to prominence and influence in the 1910s and 1930s. “It was truly innovative and featured some seriously pleasing quirks in both its architecture and typography”, Dylan Griffith of Smörgåsbord tells us, “we felt that adopting some of this visual sensibility could lead us to a memorable and bold marque that would definitely be ‘of Amsterdam’”. This combination of contemporary identity design and historical influence results in a concoction that would not look out of place alongside the brutal modernist identities of the mid 20th century or today’s branding efforts.
Alongside the logotype is an immensely comprehensive set of guidelines for LOT61, including bespoke icons referring to specific brewing methods, the 2:1 ratio of the line weights in the hand-drawn characters of the logotype as well as a ’flavour wheel’ of coffee tasting notes. The latter was developed by World Coffee Research and has a corresponding ‘sensory lexicon’ of flavours to colours – something Smörgåsbord utilised in the colours of the coffee packaging. Griffith comments that “as far as we know it’s the first time that the lexicon has been used to directly inform a coffee brand’s packaging system”, expanding by telling us that “whilst it may seem on first glance that the palette is somewhat fluid, all colour choices conform to the flavour notes of each coffee.”
Although handing over their brand guidelines to the in-house designers, Smörgåsbord remains regularly involved with LOT61 – “for us, this is where it gets interesting and where the brand is truly tested and comes to life”, Griffith concludes.