Pentagram has designed the brand identity for Manataco, a Mexican restaurant based in Palma de Mallorca.
The restaurant takes a casual approach to dining, with a focus on tacos. The ambition of Manataco is to export authentic recipes from Mexico City, such as the typical ‘Taco Pastor’, cooked by traditional ‘taqueros’, taco-chefs from the capital city. Eschewing the traditional more decorative approach chosen by most Mexican restaurants, the design team created a pared-back, yet playful typographic identity embracing the characterful spirit of Mexican culture.
Inspired by the idea of sprinkling different toppings onto a taco and the view of the ingredients from above, the design uses a combination of falling letters and aerial wordplays to create a dynamic visual language.
The choice of words isn’t limited to food, but embraces the lively and spontaneous Mexican attitude by engaging with each different application and format to suggest high-spirited associations – salsa on the chef’s apron, sunglasses and chewing gum in a tote bag.
Pentagram designed a teaser for the restaurant opening in the form of a newspaper consisting of randomly ordered spreads which can also be pulled out to function as menus and placemats – these are full of breadcrumbs, salsa stains and accidental drops of saliva. On the reverse, the spreads feature a collection of cheeky, but not-very-politically-correct nicknames.
The choice of the functional typeface Akzidenz Grotesk and a restrained black and white colour palette enhances the vibrancy of the food and the environment and complements the tongue-in-cheek approach. The system is designed to be rolled out across print and digital channels.