TRY Design create a psychedelic identity for sustainable Asian-Scandinavian restaurant Tunco
For the entrepreneurs behind Oslovian noodle restaurant Tunco, reducing their environmental impact is just as important as the quality of their affordable, Asian-inspired cuisine. Founded in 2015, they donate a meal to a child in need for every single meal they sell to a customer – a commitment that’s seen them build up a conscious and committed following over the years. Despite that, they’d struggled with their brand – finding it to be too anonymous compared to their bold mission, meaning interest beyond their core, and ultimately niche, target group was lacking.
To solve their conundrum, Tunco’s founders turned to the branding department of Norwegian communications agency TRY Design for a revitalised identity system, website and interior design; hoping to come out with a visual language more reflective of their explorative, genre-bending recipes.
The resulting identity revolves around the concept of ‘trippy cuisine,’ playing on the connection between food and our senses through organic shapes and expressive typography. Set in Dave Coleman’s Funkford, the Tunco wordmark is a prime example of this idea due to the movement and mystique conveyed by its 60s inspired bellbottom serifs.
It’s used as the vibrant centrepiece of the identity alongside a series of abstract illustrations by Robin Snasen Rengård that aim to represent unusual flavour combinations through their flowing forms. Speaking on their choice to work with Rengård to bring their vision to life, TRY Design’s Bendik Høibraaten explains that they felt “he could pull off this kind of liquid, psychedelic style of illustration” and that they “managed to get in the same headspace together and make everything into one cohesive package.”
The core components of the identity are accompanied by two contrasting typefaces. The first – Kessler from Production Type – “was chosen for a couple of reasons,” Høibraaten tells us. “It has such a lean shape but with a distinct flair that figuratively compliments the healthy Asian-Scandinavian food at Tunco,” adding that it also pairs “really well” with Rengård’s bold illustration style. Playing even more of a supportive role, WELTKERN’s sans serif Lausanne was chosen because they “needed something very functional for the no-frills applications like point of sale and their online ordering system.” The colour palette and photography style complete TRY’s cohesive, considered and characterful visual language for Tunco, taking cues from Asian cuisine without being too specific or cliché.