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Eldon Kymson
Umami Shop

Umami Shop by Eldon Kymson

CLIENT

A small bou­tique gro­cery located in Bur­gundy, France. They offer Asian ingre­di­ents and recipes and also hold reg­u­lar cook­ing classes for locals. Their goal is to pro­vide an alter­na­tive eat­ing lifestyle through Asian cui­sine, par­tic­u­larly through the dis­cov­ery of the fifth taste sen­sa­tion: umami.


BRIEF

The objec­tive was to cre­ate a logo (and brand) that strayed from the stereo­typ­i­cal style that accom­pa­nies many exist­ing Asian grocers—dragons, chop­sticks, hokey “for­tune cookie” type­faces, and the like. Also, as the client described it, many Asian food stores in the coun­try are seen in a neg­a­tive light; they are clut­tered, unclean, and even unfriendly. The chal­lenge was to design a mar­que that was clever, min­i­mal, clean, and wel­com­ing. If this was achieved, the mar­que would align with Umami Shop’s vision: a clean and orga­nized Asian gro­cery with help­ful and friendly staff.


APPROACH

The process began with an audit of Asian ingre­di­ents, cook­ing and eat­ing uten­sils, and serv­ing wares to find a more unique sym­bol. Many Asian cul­tures uti­lize bowls to serve their foods while Euro­peans often use plates. Fur­ther­more, many Asian cul­tures share their dishes while Euro­peans eat from their indi­vid­ual plates. From this came the con­cept: a “U” clev­erly hid­den within a min­i­mal­ist bowl. The warm orange invokes a friendly fla­vor. The logo rein­forces that Umami Shop is here to “share” knowl­edge of Asian cui­sine. Its min­i­mal­ist nature and unique­ness says clean, mod­ern, and memorable.

Until we met Eldon, find­ing an orig­i­nal and strong con­cep­tual thinker to build the Umami Shop brand and iden­tity was a big chal­lenge for our startup. Our need was to develop a brand that was mod­ern, invit­ing, inno­v­a­tive, and pro­voked dis­cus­sion. The logo needed to con­vey an alter­na­tive eat­ing con­cept of savori­ness and deli­cious­ness with a value-added retail busi­ness model. Eldon deliv­ered us a logo that was just what we’d hoped for. The process was smooth and col­lab­o­ra­tive. And with our new logo, the story of Umami Shop began: to eat and laugh, together. — Quyen Duong, Owner of Umami Shop

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