The one with the fish

Akashi-Tai is the flagship sake brand of the Akashi Sake Brewery, a small sake producer based in Hyogo, Japan. As a premium artisan sake brand with ambitious global expansion plans, the business knew its previous design would not succeed in the West, but it was highly recognisable in Japan, as it was ‘the one with the fish’, its strongest brand asset.

We created an iconic yet beautiful new execution of the Tai (sea bream) with the fish conveying optimism and positivity. And we created a label design that plays into the traditional, established codes of artisan sake, with large kanji calligraphy on Japanese paper. We commissioned Aurore de la Morinerie, a French artist who had studied calligraphic technique in Japan, to create the Tai, and Hirano Sogen, a renowned and respected Japanese artist and calligrapher to create the Akashi-Tai kanji brand mark.

The result is equally credible in both its home market Japan and the new emerging sake markets of the west.