A new Baldessari-inspired Mexico City restaurant tackles the ‘clean eating’ fad

Hungry Beast heathfood restaurant in Mexico City, designed by SAVVY studio
(Image credit: SAVVY studio)

Interior architecture, branding and healthy eating collide in a new project in the heart of Mexico City’s Roma district. Designed top-to-toe by SAVVY studio, Hungry Beast juice bar and kitchen offers punchy flavours and a concise visual identity inspired by the riotous dotwork of artist John Baldessari.

‘It’s a matter of focus: if you believe your world is formed by what you look at, and you just don’t look at the usual things, then your world will change,’ Baldessari once said. ‘To this end, defying the rules becomes a sort of “learning by doing” situation.’ SAVVY used this quote as inspiration for its design concept, which flouts the so-called ‘rules’ of health food branding (which the brand argues all too often thrust ‘healthiness’ in your face). Instead, the graphic identity is ‘beyond a fad’; it is about the simplicity in providing quality products, healthy ingredients and creativity.

SAVVY studio designs Hungry Beast restaurant in Mexico City

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Baldessari’s ‘Connecting Dots’ and ‘Gemini’ series were the key inspirations for the branding. Packaging elements are stripped to their core, punctuated by pops of colour and visceral food shots. A half-eaten sandwich crumbles out of its box, a sunshine spill of orange juice rays across a table, a chocolate-slicked donut is imbibed by a bite mark. No mention of health in sight.

Yet healthy the offerings are. Sandwiches are gluten and dairy free; stuffed with organic ham and avocado, or steamed broccoli and lemon dressing. Dollops of light hummus are dropped over eggplant, alfalfa sprouts and kale pesto. Juices are probiotic, zingy and freshly made. Portions are generous, but calories remain low, and meals are balanced.

They can be enjoyed in-house, in the tiny seating area SAVVY was also in charge of. The interior architecture has been completed with the same sense of fun, visual economy and artful influence. Stucco, volcanic stone and solid wood add warmth across the floors and walls, while a metalic bar slices through the middle. Baldessari-shaped colours hang from a lamp on the ceiling; little drops of juice ready to be swallowed by the so-called ‘Hungry Beast’.

Packaging inspired by Baldessari's Connecting Dots and Gemini series

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Interior design at Hungry Beast, by SAVVY studio

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Outdoor seating at Hungry Beast in Mexico City

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Some of the juices available at Mexico City restaurant Hungry Beast, available to be taken away

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Orange juice by Hungry Beast, inspired by John Baldessari

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Reading materials and tea blends available at Hungry Beast, Mexico City

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Minimal interiors, including a plain black coat hook

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Ingredients used accompanied by the Hungry Beast menu

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Street view of Hungry Beast, including the outdoor seating space

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

A takeaway bag of foods available from Hungry Beast in Mexico City

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

Coffee, another of the menu selections at Hungry Beast

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

A half-eaten donut, akin to works by John Baldessari

(Image credit: savvy-studio.net)

INFORMATION

For more information, visit the SAVVY website (opens in new tab)

Elly Parsons is the Digital Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees Wallpaper.com and its social platforms. She has been with the brand since 2015 in various roles, spending time as digital writer – specialising in art, technology and contemporary culture – and as deputy digital editor. She was shortlisted for a PPA Award in 2017, has written extensively for many publications, and has contributed to three books. She is a guest lecturer in digital journalism at Goldsmiths University, London, where she also holds a masters degree in creative writing. Now, her main areas of expertise include content strategy, audience engagement, and social media.