As I sat mindlessly stirring my coffee in a small deli in Sandhurst, waiting for my car to be MOT’d, these 3 little guys jumped out at me from the very well stocked shelves - and said ‘Alright Steve!’.
Purveying the shelves’ content as I wondered how much work (and expense) my car was going to command, I noted that all of the products within the store appeared to be good quality, many were familiar names and styles and all were nicely put together. But these chaps were the only ones that spoke out.
They are 3 beers from the Gipsy Hill Brewing Company - HEPCAT, SOUTHPAW and BEATNIK. Each had their own character - not only portrayed as male caricatures on the label front but also in their flavour and the fun descriptions on the reverse. Really creative, attractive, thoughtful design that help their products come alive.
The shop was small but stylish. All products had been carefully chosen to compliment the store, work alongside each other and to sell. The stock was attractive, all with perfectly fine designs and packaging. But very few of them sparkled. They all seemed to merge into a pot of nice-sameness. The Gipsy Hill beers were the only products to create a real presence and (not expecting to purchase anything other than a flat white) I ended up taking these three guys home with me.
It spoke volumes that design can be nicely crafted, professional and current but against similar, or more compelling competition, can fail to make real impact. Gipsy Hill have certainly created a brand style that is like no other. Their products are full of personality and punch and are positioned to fight fellow beer brands and other products off the shelves for many years to come.