We worked with clients Levi Roots and Real Restaurants to create the interiors and branding for Levi Roots Caribbean Smokehouse. We worked closely with both clients to create a restaurant which could sit on the high street as a standalone restaurant and open new sites as a group collection.
For the brand to evolve successfully, it was vital that we communicated Levi’s vision and personality into the 134-cover dining space. We gathered personal items from him, which he generously gave up. We hung his guitar - the very same one used in his famous Dragon's Den pitch - curated music from his personal collection and even displayed the only surviving photograph of him as a child.
We took inspiration from Levi’s Grandmother’s front room to create a vintage, bric ‘n brac display and homely feel as you enter the restaurant. We worked with Levi to ensure that the design was authentic to what a Caribbean Smokehouse in East London should look and feel like. Levi's is not only a Caribbean offer, but it also serves a predominantly London based audience and needs to speak to them. Levi was keen to take elements of Brixton and London life and weave them into the concept.
The existing site has incredibly high ceilings, which we utalised to put in a mezzanine level. We further divided the space by creating zones with additional structures that drew inspiration from the huts of the Caribbean. The dining hut has louvres panels that fit within a timber framework. Affording flexibility and privacy, these louvres can open and close depending on the booking size.
Celebrating Caribbean cooking practices we designed the wood-burning grill, on which the meat is cooked, to be the focal point.
The grill is made from a corrugated tin roof, with a timber frame and shipping container cladding on the front.
On entering the space, diners are met with what looks like a raised banquette seating area. This space is a performance stage, a naturally essential criterion for Levi Roots. Using the high ceilings, we were able to create a theatrical feel to the stage by installing LED spotlights and ‘barn door’ lighting.
The restaurant needed to be a flexible space. We incorporated this into our design ensuring that all seating could be moved.
We used exceptionally rich and textured materials for our interiors and branding.
Materials included corrugated steel containers, vintage wooden speakers, reclaimed timbers and custom-designed waiter stations with flight and production-case counter.