Pentagram-Designed Soufflé Captures The Spirit Of French Home Cooking

by Rudy Sanchez on 02/03/2021 | 3 Minute Read

Everyone knows the French for their haute cuisine, with elaborate and exquisite dishes made using exotic or rare ingredients and prepared with complex techniques—and by that, we mean butter. But as with many food traditions, the heart of French gastronomy is the rustic, homemade cannon of dishes and foods, often prepared in a single piece of cookery and served oven-to-table, like coq au vin, boeuf bourguignon, and gratin dauphinois.

Suffice to say, cookware is also a big deal in France.

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New kitchen brand Soufflé respects the French home cooking tradition while reimagining cookware for the contemporary kitchen. While considering the environment, consumer health, and practicality, the upstart home kitchen supplier never loses cooking’s joie de vivre.

Pentagram worked with the startup on brand identity, packaging, and industrial and product design. Rather than use toxic and potentially dangerous coatings, Pentagram worked with local manufacturers to create enamel-coated steel cookware in vibrant and contemporary colors. The cookware is made in France and nods to Gallic heritage is evident in details such as the handles’ ribbed design, which is reminiscent of the Citroën H utility van. Pragmatic considerations such as storage are considered and seamlessly integrated into the product design.

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Editorial photograph
Editorial photograph

Pentagram also designed the packaging, which sticks to French and culinary traditions, and is designed with children in mind. They also made pragmatic considerations when it came to shipping and storage, as well as the environment. The packaging is plastic-free and uses heavy craft material to protect the contents.

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“We developed a plastic-free solution, with the cookware held internally by a cardboard structure rather than the usual plastic bags or foam. The products are placed in several standard-sized trays, which are held together in a branded sleeve. This is a modular approach, with storage efficiencies for the client, but it is also intended to appeal to children who want to play with the packaging or re-use it for craft projects. Playful illustrations used in the internal packaging add to the opportunities for re-use,” said Jon Marshall, partner at Pentagram London.

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At the center of the brand’s identity is the custom wordmark designed by Pentagram. The upturned accent mark and ligatures give it a playfulness that bolsters the joy of cooking, especially at-home for loved ones. Additional graphics reinforce the rustic and casual charm of Soufflé, and its raison d’etre, food.

“The colors are inspired by French art, food, and the landscape – the core brand color is French Ultramarine (after the artists' pigment). This is complemented by clementine, mustard, and peach,” says Angus Hyland, partner at Pentagram London.

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“Some geometry in the cookware echos curvature of the accent on the é in the Soufflé, which is very French,” Marshall adds. 

Soufflé kitchenware sets are now available for pre-order, with the firm stating an expected delivery date of April 2021.

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