While this street manages to have the least political businesses on the Circle (outside of Kramer Books across the street), this sign has all sorts of interesting baggage behind it.

While this stretch of road manages to be the most corporate and, for obvious reasons, least directly political of the immediate branches of Dupont Circle, this sign caught my attention for several reasons. To preface this, I understand that most of Dupont Circle’s businesses target an upper-middle class clientele- the menu at Sweetgreen seems to hover around $10 for an entree, which is not bargain prices. But the exclusion of cash from their purchases says a lot about how they see themselves and their clientele. Despite it’s apparent dearth among the professional class in America, cash is likely not going anyway any time soon- many people still pay primarily by it. It says a lot for a corporation to say that the only patrons they want either have smart phones or debit cards- not to mention that they want you to use their own app. While I’m not sure whether this is politics, it’s sure got a lot of it clinging on.

5. Background

A proposed branding for stationary, menu design, and other ephemera, with the illustrations by Brosmind.

Merry+Valenzula. “Beefsteak,” Behance, 10 Oct. 2015, https://www.behance.net/gallery/30211853/Beefsteak. Portfolio.

In this brief portfolio work by the creative agency Merry+Valenzula, we see a brief description of the artistic spirit behind Beefsteak’s unique visual identity, both in its branding and its physical locations. For example, one sees dummy versions of apps, menus, and even stationary, as well as a look at assorted merchandise. As well as this, we are given the basic information of the illustrators of the vegetables who make the restaurant unique- a pair of illustrators from Barcelona known as Brosmind. On top of that, we also see concepts of the interior design, arranged by Capella Garcia Arquitectura, another Barceolan firm. Finally, the portfolio ends with an exterior shot of one of the locations.

While this is sparse for words, knowing who was responsible for the signature parts of the restaurant’s design can be a major boon. In the mapping of commonplaces, the main attraction of BGR and it’s neighbors is the way they all utilize space in the same building to vastly different effect- allowing us to see the way they shape similar canvases to create gestalts of a far different rhetorical nature. And above all, it’s quite evident that this restaurant had both time and money put towards making it unique.

6. Background

The interior of the Logan’s Circle branch of Sweetgreen, as mentioned below. This photograph is attributed to Chris Rief, who appears to have taken it purely for this article.

Sirzyk, Samantha. “Behind the Design: Sweetgreen.” We Love DC, 10 Mar. 2010,  http://www.welovedc.com/2010/03/10/behind-the-design-sweetgreen-at-logan-circle/.

In this analytical work by DC blogger Samantha Sirzyk, she examines the interior design of the Sweetgreen at Logan Circle. After mentioning how her interest was sparked a similar write up in the magazine Metropolis, she begins to examine the new decor of the restaurant in great depth, analyzing all the design elements that brings the restaurant together. She first mentions the people involved- Peter Hapstack III on behalf of Core+ Architecture and Design, and Olivia Wolf and the Unison Design Agency for work on the omnipresent logo. She then breaks down specific design notes: use of lighting, distinctive salvaged hickory paneling, subway tiling on the floor. One thing noted in particular is the use of a mural by a local artist, Tang, on the hallway approaching the restroom. She concludes with a positive acclimation of a unique idea for a QR code in the restaurant, used to deliver a unique message every day.

While not exactly a new article, this was written after the establishment of the Dupont Circle branch of Sweetgreen, which means that most of this information is at least a solid lead if not also applicable. Furthermore, this was the newest information I could find on the restaurant’s interior design- I had little other choice. However, I do believe that this information will ultimately prove its worth.