Handed down through family and friends since its establishment in 1888, Katz’s Delicatessen is the oldest Jewish deli in New York City and a cultural icon that still draws many tourists and locals alike. As one of the oldest and the most famous deli in New York, Katz's Delicatessen came with its own set of challenges when it comes to this rebranding. Instead of completely revamping the brand, this project really focused on elevating it while conserving and honoring Katz's tradition to highlight the essence and authenticity of the joint without it feeling, God forbid, touristy.
As one can observe through their original logo which is a detailed illustration of their building, the store itself is a big part of Katz's identity. To create a more simple and scalable logo while still representing the storefront, their iconic neon sign was translated into a logotype with a horizontal and vertical lockup that can be scaled as large as a billboard or as small as a social media icon.
Some of Katz's most recognizable features are the neon signs that decorate its walls and windows. To create assets that would let customers take a piece of Katz's back home, some of their iconic neon signs have been turned into a unique pattern that can be used for merchandise & packaging.
At Katz's Delicatessen, customers are handed meal tickets that they must return before leaving the store if they don't want to risk the $40 fine. This particular rule has become the store's tradition and another iconic part of the Katz's experience. The business card is modeled after the meal ticket with its tinted stationery paper and perforated edges so that customers can have a piece they could take home after submitting their meal tickets. The business card also has a back where you can write down your order and share on social media under the hashtag, #whatigotatkatz.
To create an ownable typographic system for Katz's Deli, various signs within the store were observed and referred to. The blue & red type on top of the faded white background screams old-school deli, while the playful mixture of serif, sans-serif, hand-written, and script typefaces are stretched and pulled in unassuming ways to signal a sort of authenticity befitting Katz's. After some experimentation, a series of typographic assets was established to be used in various digital platforms.