Disciplines: Art direction Brand concept Brand strategy Graphic design Identity design Packaging design
Client: Alken-Maes
Disciplines: Art direction Brand concept Brand strategy Graphic design Identity design Packaging design
Client: Alken-Maes
Disciplines: Art direction Brand concept Brand strategy Graphic design Identity design Packaging design
Client: Alken-Maes

Reviving Belgium's first lager

Meet Cristal: a relatively small beer brand from a small country. But not just any beer and not just any country: Cristal is the first lager made in Belgium – a nation known for its beer. Unfortunately, Cristal had yet to capitalize on this unique positioning because their craft image stood in the way. We helped them reclaim their rightful place at the forefront of the Belgian lager landscape.

The idea

How do you make a brand shine when its DNA is defined by a modest Limburgian character? The answer is simple: stay close to your roots and tap into what Cristal has always been. A modest, simple lager. A genuine beer of the people.

It’s this grounded personality that makes Cristal the quintessential Belgian lager. Belgians are known for their humility and passionate communal spirit. It’s what unites them across all spheres, from family to food, sports to science. Through this collective passion, they make great things happen.

It’s the same passion that also defines Cristal. A collective of modest but passionate people, each doing their part, from farmer to brewer to barman, resulting in a beautiful, typically Belgian lager. Great, because it’s made it together.

Rebranding Cristal meant, above all, expressing these two essential characteristics of the beer: the low-key, modest roots, and the chain of passionate people behind the beer.

To bring about Cristal’s low-key character, we went back to their roots. Green and orange had always been the brand’s dominant colors. We reclaimed them as a modern-day fiery warm red combined with green detailing.

We further reinterpreted Cristal’s heritage by using their traditional graphic elements in a new and exciting way. A blow-up of the logo cropped at the bottom, ads energy. The heraldry hints at Cristal’s rich past, but the use of overprint gives it a forward-looking twist.

Taking inspiration from small-scale screen printing, the vibrant new colors and typographical elements work as graphic assets, one playfully stacked one on top of the other. The visual identity feels fresh and modern, but still fits the modest nature of the brand.

In terms of photography, we introduced dynamic angles combined with vibrant red color to create an over saturated seventies food photography vibe.

Cristal's heroes

To express Cristal’s other key characteristic - the people behind the brand - we commissioned illustrations of the farmers, brewers and bartenders essential to the entire beer brewing process. Their stories are brought to life on the packaging and the website.

WeWantMore challenged Cristal to rethink itself as a brand, to act like a young competitor on a national scale. It resulted in a fresh identity that feels like a solid step forward for the brand, and for the Belgian lager category as a whole.

Sarah De Corte, Senior Brand manager Cristal

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