Authentic Cuisine. Fresh Ingredients.
El Mariachi Mexican Restaurant & Cantina is a small chain restaurant owned by the Rizo family. With locations across the two Virginias, including Beaver, WV and Tazewell, VA, the brand has become an essential part of their communities. The restaurant will keep growing its unique identity as the business expands.
El Mariachi was one of our first clients. We’ve enjoyed a long relationship with them in our retainer services for on-call creative services. Over the years, we partnered with them on over fifty projects and counting. We’ve managed their branding, designed their website, and produced numerous print design jobs, including billboards, menus, and banners.
A Family Story
As a family-owned restaurant in business since 1997, El Mariachi Mexican Restaurant and Cantina has a rich history of offering authentic and diverse dishes to the two Virginias. The Rizo family has crafted a unique identity to go along with their delicious food, so Starry Eyes had an important job to do in building on their established brand identity to help them tell a story to their (hungry) community.
We worked with the owners to recreate their logo in a colorful vector format based on the existing restaurant signage. This new version displays the warmth of both the restaurant space and the food they serve. We expanded this logo to multiple formats that would suit all the contexts and purposes El Mariachi would need.
Laying The Foundation
We took a different approach with category organization on the original menu we redesigned, providing customers with a more straightforward method of selection. For the new menus, we sourced water-, tear-, and chemical-resistant paper. This design was the second iteration of the menu engineering/design that we completed for this client.
The Rizo family were remarkable in their openness in letting us explore bold colors and concepts. This freedom and creativity made for a unique and vibrant finished product!
Billboards have been a hallmark of advertising companies for decades, and they are still one of the easiest ways small businesses can get their products and services in front of large numbers of potential customers. Place a billboard beside a busy interstate, and you get thousands of people seeing your ad every day.
El Mariachi has hired us to design various billboards, with the most recent based beside I-64, near their location in Beaver. It’s not often that we get to create a billboard design and see our work in such a large format very often, so we made sure to enjoy this process!
Good food photography is essential for any restaurant. It takes skill to accurately capture the anticipation of a tasty meal, including its steam as it comes fresh from the kitchen. These photos must display the excitement of a dish and act as one of the leading forces persuading customers to stop by.
To cover the photography for this project, we teamed up with RC Creative, who photographed the food and drinks and delivered the raw images to us. Our team edited the photos and placed them on El Mariachi’s menus, website, and other various projects.
As competitive as the food industry is, successful restaurants grow based on much more than what happens in the kitchen. A bold online presence is increasingly crucial for all businesses, and websites are the centerpiece of a company’s digital identity.
Websites are a useful tool for any business to communicate with their customers. We designed a site that enables El Mariachi Mexican Restaurant to spread its bold identity on the web. The site not only tells visitors about the history of the business but also displays a full menu, showing off all the delicious items and their eye-catching presentation.