Mark Anthony Brands approached Pearlfisher with the strategic vision of creating a premium Canadian whisky brand for a modern consumer. Working in close collaboration throughout the entire process, the design agency brought this vision to life, creating the brand identity and brand world for innovative new challenger and Canadian whisky brand, BEARFACE.
Unlike other whisky categories, Canadian whisky is not bound by the same stringent regulations and therefore has the opportunity to be much more progressive, as reflected in BEARFACE’s mission to ‘HIDE NOTHING, FEAR NOTHING’, and its dedication to developing an exceptional whisky by challenging norms.
BEARFACE is crafted to create truly unique blends transforming how consumers experience Canadian whisky, and offering a way into whisky for a new consumer that speaks to their age, creativity and contemporary worldview. For the brand’s first release, BEARFACE Triple Oak, the single grain 7-year-old whisky is first aged in American ex-bourbon oak barrels then in French oak casks that previously contained high-end Bordeaux wines, and finally finished with three-year-old air-dried virgin Hungarian oak – a first for the Canadian whisky category – providing spicy notes and a rich texture.
BEARFACE is a whisky that is breaking new ground with bold ideas and a confidence to redefine the norm it is an indisputably inventive, creative and collaborative brand. The big idea was about transforming a tired category that had lost its way, versus the ambition set out by its forefathers around innovation and versatility – hence the name ‘BEARFACE’ which, brought to life the ethos, bold personality and desire to lift the veil on the process behind Canadian whisky.
Behind BEARFACE are a group of people who are proud of opening up what’s unique about them and passionate about reinventing the Canadian whisky category. Ultimately, the new brand and everything it stands for challenges convention – from driving innovation in taste exploration, to the central idea of embracing collaboration and endless curiosity at heart.
Talking about how this translated into the brand design, Jon Vallance, Pearlfisher Creative Director said, “The new brand identity evokes the adventurous, raw and honest spirit of modern Canada – and its people – found in every drop of BEARFACE whisky. Inspired by the power and bravery of the bear, a clawmark features on the unique bottle design forming the core brand mark. It’s emotive and immediate, and supports both the core brand lock-up and comes to life across the brand’s key assets including website, posters, wooden shipping containers, barrels and coasters.”
The warm and inviting palette is inspired by the colours of the Canadian landscape, as well as making subtle reference to Canada’s national colour. Bold typography, authentic illustrations and patterns are based on marks made from hand-chiselling wood and have been transferred digitally to preserve a crafted aesthetic with a more modernised look and feel. Meanwhile, lifestyle photography feels energetic and shot from the hip – with a focus on urban Canada and the modern Canadian spirit, representing the brand’s target audience and the brand’s ‘HIDE NOTHING, FEAR NOTHING’ mentality.
Davin Nugent, CEO at Mark Anthony Brands International said, “We love the energy and the raw nature of the design, which very much reflects BEARFACE’s aim to showcase how Canadian whisky can lead the whisky category through innovation. The brand matches up to the uniqueness of the product and opens up an exciting new chapter in the world of Canadian whisky.”
BEARFACE is now available with the initial BEARFACE Triple Oak Canadian Whisky blend across Canada and will be rolling out across the US from May 2019.