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Thursday
Aug212014

Coffee & Beer Taps

Unlikely Creatures for Cartel

Cartel Coffee Lab opened in 2008 as a specialty coffee roastery serving Tempe, Arizona from a small warehouse space.  In its first five years, the company grew to include five additional locations in Phoenix and Tucson while expanding its original Tempe warehouse to accommodate a larger clientele and a beer brewery.  Cartel's forays into kegged beer and cold-brewed coffee represented an opportunity for the company's physical branding to travel beyond the bounds of its own stores as various bars and restaurants began to offer Cartel's product.  The most visible bit of that branding is the tap handle, which announces various beverage offerings to customers and acts as the point of physical interaction between the server and the brand.

Thursday
Aug212014

Tap handles are nothing less than a tool, and these handles celebrate that fact.  They trade on the same tension between ruggedness and refinement that the company's physical identity has exploited from its inception; the raw industrialism of Cartel's warehouse spaces and furniture is perfectly counterbalanced by the sleek precision of its machinery.  Cartel's taps are designed to exist comfortably alongside both of these influences and to effectively communicate Cartel's spirit and quality wherever they are installed.