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Monthly Archives

June 2019

Taco Joint

The Disaster

The Disaster

“Simply Tex-Mex” “Simply Ok” This week’s #FridayFeed restaurant branding review is Taco Joint in Preston Center.

Order Up!

I like tacos and I love queso, so taking a preview of the menu on the website, I was prepared to order the “Disaster” which is a big bowl of cheesy queso with meat, pico and guac and a giant basket of chips. I got suckered into ordering the Wednesday special – the sour cream chicken enchiladas, because obviously the specials sign caught my eye AND because the menu was pretty busy AND I felt “order pressure” at the counter with people waiting behind me. You know what I’m talking about. Danny ordered the Spicy Pork and the Spicy Fried Chicken tacos. As we find at most restaurants, what most people think is spicy is not really spicy at all. I guess spice is different than hot, that’s fair. He said they were “ok but not hot.” The disaster & chips came out first and it was pretty good. My enchiladas were ok but presentation was not great. It came in a round aluminum pan. My issue with the food is that there are so many taco concepts in Dallas that have elevated their food and presentation and brand, that while it might be pretty popular with the locals, I just didn’t see anything WOW on the menu, on the walls or on the table. The iced tea was fresh. 😉 

Environmental Branding:

Taco Joint’s Preston Center location is the brand’s fourth location. It occupies the former Extreme Pizza space. I’ve always loved this space because it has a built in covered outdoor patio in front which I think makes for a nice inviting entry and opportunity to put your brand in the face of passers-by. This strip gets lots of walking traffic and it was pretty busy when we got there with a line at the counter. Beyond my love of the entry, this brand is not very polished like many of the other restaurant brands we review. It reminds me of Texadelphia – just a neighborhood joint with unspectacular furniture and decor. The walls were filled with album covers stapled to the wall. There were some painted murals as well. The menu board is total chaos. Chalkboard-style, filled edge to edge and draped with some colored christmas lights. No signature light fixtures, no feature decor items. Since “joint” is in the name, the environment did meet that expectation.

Branding DNA:

Taco Joint has a decent logo and custom printed cups. They serve their food in red plastic baskets lined with tissue & foil. I didn’t see any custom bags or other branded items. The had good exterior signage. I think part of the mass appeal of this brand is its “joint-ness” and its history. I give mad props to restaurants that make it 11 years and expand because they must have decent food and a local following. I’m just saying that new customers can only judge a place on its current merits and I think it could up its game.

Digital Branding:

We always check out the website before we visit a restaurant. The design of the website was pretty good I thought. Great use of color, graphics and typefaces. I only had issue with using the menu. I’d prefer that Breakfast, Lunch/Dinner and Tacos/Combos were one scrolling menu so I could see everything without having to  click on a different tab. To say their social media accounts could use some love would be an understatement. Taco Joint has social media accounts, but it’s been years since they’ve made any posts. To me this feels like a huge missed opportunity, especially in today’s digital age.
–Danny

Score:

MJ gives it a B- and Danny gives it B

#FridayFeed:

Every Friday, Studio B Dallas visits a local fast casual concept for lunch to critique the brand (and eat lunch). Three rules apply: it’s a concept we haven’t been to or it’s been in the restaurant news and it’s within 10 miles of our office. Wait, four rules – it can’t be sushi. Danny doesn’t do sushi. If you have any suggestions on where we should eat next, feel free to leave it in the comments. Look for our restaurant branding reviews each Friday! MJ & Danny

Paciugo Summer Promotion

Dreamsicle Smoothie & Lemonades

Dreamsicle Smoothie & Lemonades

Dreamsicle & Cold Brew Coffee Promotion

Shout out to our client Paciugo Gelato and the recent launch of the Orange Dreamsicle Gelato and Cold Brew Coffee promotions! Studio B designed all in store marketing materials for these campaigns. Go get yourself a Dreamsicle Pop or Gelato cone. It’s a summertime favorite!

Wheelhouse

18-Foot Art Installation

18-Foot Art Installation

#FridayFeed happy hour edition! This week’s restaurant branding review is Wheelhouse located in the Design District.

This week MJ is on vacation, so Kinsey and I are taking over! Wheelhouse is located off of Oak Lawn and Hi Line in the Design District.

Order Up!

Let’s dive straight into the drinks! I ordered a Sippin’ Time – Texas sweet tea vodka, mint, lemon and club soda that come in a tall glass. It was the perfect drink to order for a hot summer day. Kinsey ordered a Kickstarter – a bright green drink with mezcal, poblano pepper, lime, pineapple and cumin bitters. Fair warning, this drink is not for everyone. If you don’t like the combination of sweet and smoky flavors, then this drink probably isn’t for you. The menu is a bit pricey, but I guess that’s to be expected given the location.

Environmental Branding:

Wheelhouse has a great industrial interior complete with large doors that span along one side of the exterior and open up to the outdoor shared patio space with sister brand Sassetta. A huge 18-foot all white art installation of a falling man, located on their patio, is arguably their most distinct feature aside from their refreshing cocktails. You can spot this enormous installation driving along Oak Lawn. 

Score:

Overall, Wheelhouse is a great place to hangout and have a couple of drinks. Danny and Kinsey give it a solid A.

#FridayFeed:

Every Friday, Studio B Dallas visits a local fast casual concept for lunch to critique the brand (and eat lunch). Three rules apply: it’s a concept we haven’t been to or it’s been in the restaurant news and it’s within 10 miles of our office. Wait, four rules – it can’t be sushi. Danny doesn’t do sushi. If you have any suggestions on where we should eat next, feel free to leave it in the comments. Look for our restaurant branding reviews each Friday! MJ & Danny

The Biscuit Bar

Tatters Gonna Tate Neon

Tatters Gonna Tate Neon

This week’s #FridayFeed restaurant branding review is The Biscuit Bar on Hillcrest near the SMU campus.

The Biscuit Bar has 1 other location in Plano and I’m guessing more on the way. They have a touchingly sad but inspirational story behind the concept. Go. Read. Grief to Gravy.

Order Up!

I was really excited to try The Biscuit Bar because I love southern food and I love biscuits. I didn’t have faith that the biscuit would handle like a bun so I went for the Bacon, Egg + Cheese with an extra egg and Tater Tots. Danny looked at the menu beforehand and he already knew he was getting the Hot Hot Chicken which is Nashville style hot chicken, dill pickles and house made ranch and Tots. Erin got the Monte Cristo minus the ham. It had a giant portion of smoked turkey, jack cheese on a french toast biscuit with strawberry jam and the sweet potato Tots. We all agreed that the biscuits were good. We weren’t super impressed with the rest though. When you name something HOT HOT Chicken – it should be smokin’ hot spicy – otherwise, just use one HOT, right? It was seasoned nicely but was not spicy. My Bacon Egg(s) and Cheese was just ok – did not love the cheese – I think it was a slice of American – could have used a sharp cheddar. I did save my top biscuit to try a side of sausage gravy and Strawberry preserves. The preserves were really good. Erin’s Monte Cristo kind of fell apart on the first bite so a little messy. All in all – the food was ok but unlike the awesome plating at Whistle Britches, the food was served in paper boats with tissue and plasticware which downgraded the presentation. I like the concept, I just think the biscuits are almost too small to make a “meal” sized “sandwich” but maybe too large to work like sliders. I think if you kept the biscuits a little smaller and served on a plate you could encourage ordering 2 or 3, kind of like tacos. More fun, more sales. Just my opinion.

Environmental Branding:

The interior is super cute. There’s a bar, nice indoor and outdoor patio seating, big yellow garage doors to separate the two. A cool Stubborn Soda drink machine with pull handles which is fun. You could tell immediately that there was a quality design shop behind this brand and shocker…Plan B Group gets the honors. You guys rock – Studio B is continuously proud to be sometimes confused with you! Luscious creamy egg-yolk yellow cabinetry details, super cute oversized black & white gingham check wallpaper, farm style tables, butcher block tables, ship lap plank walls and lots of great neon sayings on the walls. TATERS GONA TATE…that’s so clever!

Branding DNA:

Cute name, nice logo, great colors and brand assets. Custom printed cups – love all of that. Branding is spot on.

Digital Branding:

The Biscuit Bar does a great job at social media content. Both their Instagram and Facebook have beautiful food photography mixed with fun and family lifestyle imagery. Their website is easy to navigate and has a fun neon vertical scrolling banner at the top of their homepage. Overall, they have great digital branding!
–Danny

Score:

MJ and Danny give it an A for branding and generously, a B- for food.

#FridayFeed:

Every Friday, Studio B Dallas visits a local fast casual concept for lunch to critique the brand (and eat lunch). Three rules apply: it’s a concept we haven’t been to or it’s been in the restaurant news and it’s within 10 miles of our office. Wait, four rules – it can’t be sushi. Danny doesn’t do sushi. If you have any suggestions on where we should eat next, feel free to leave it in the comments. Look for our restaurant branding reviews each Friday! MJ & Danny