The vision for this new brewpub in Chicago was diverse. Almost too diverse. Their dream was to be a collaborative brewery, craft coffee shop, global café, art space, and local goods market all at once. So we built their brand around a story as big as their aspirations. A legend that brought all those elements together with a clear promise.
Taking inspiration from classic adventure tales, scientific expeditions, and the fantasy of childhood stories, we created a backstory for the brand that was vibrant and surreal, but still felt familiar. A framework where the brand could create anything they wanted.
The Legend of Ørkenoy
In 1606, a Norwegian exploratory vessel sank while searching for a new trading route with Asia.
The only survivor was a scientist brought along to document the journey.
He awoke on a piece of wreckage, the current pulling him toward a deserted island.
Upon landing, he named it Ørkenoy.
The island was trapped at the intersection of three strong currents:
the Asiatic, European, and North American.
With every tide, wreckage and supplies washed ashore from
the farthest reaches of the globe.
Soon, the heat and isolation began to take their toll.
The notes in his journal become strange. Confused.
Childhood memories, poetry, recipes, drawings, impossible details
and figments of imagination fill the once-empty island.
What you find in the shop is based on those journals.
The ravings of a delirious mind recorded with scientific precision.
Daily events and fevered dreams hopelessly mixed,
and forever intertwined.
In their daily offerings Ørkenoy was committed to craft and modern minimalism, but still wanted people to feel welcome. Using a historic tone allowed them to feel familiar but unique—authentic yet magical—and gave the new business a sense of history.
Whatever summarized Ørkenoy, it had to encompass their constantly changing menu, experiences, and desire to be seen as more than a café brewpub. So we gave them a tagline that was a promise: no matter what you find, it will be unexpected and help you to create.
Every release at Orkenoy would become part of that tale of uncharted inspiration. Entering the shop, visitors would join the tale as every offering was released as an entry in the scientist’s journal.
Every beer would be released as a new creature discovered from the notes of the scientist: inspired by visitors’ suggestions, and blended with the brand story to allow people to become part of it.