Dal Cheeni

Branding & Design

Modernising a Mughlai restaurant

We dare you to think of a traditional Mughlai restaurant that looks like it belongs in the 21st century. Unidentifiable, boring wordmarks, dated colour palettes, and typography that’s well past its expiration date — you’d be forgiven for calling these identities a snooze-fest. Dal Cheeni, a new-age Mughlai restaurant with a modern take on classic dishes, was trying to shake off this unfair tag its predecessors had set as an industry standard.

That’s where we came in. To give it an identity as spanking fresh as its Butter Chicken. Bringing a sophisticated, contemporary finesse to category codes associated with authentic Mughlai cuisine, we retain but reimagine its old-world charm.

Our core idea for the identity is focusing on the details — that’s why our north-star is a single grain of cinnamon, The Daana — communicating this idea in a way that transcends culture and language. Our warm, welcoming colour palette is a derived from spices used in Mughlai cooking, while our typefaces are modern with variations in Devnagri. At the heart of our visual language is our extensive graphic system — with modernised, pared-back renditions of traditional Mughal illustrations, and a minimal interpretation of Jaalis found in Mughal architecture. This is similar to the principles Dal Cheeni follows too. Staying true to the roots, but redefining what it means to follow traditions.

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