Esters Wine Shop & Bar

Tucked inside a beautifully refurbished 1937 Art Deco building, Esters features floor to ceiling racks of wine focused on smaller producers, delicacies to grab on the go, beautiful small plates, and well balanced cocktails.


Esters is the newest member of the Rustic Canyon Family of Restaurants—a partnership between Josh Loeb & Zoe Nathan and the restaurant’s long time wine director, Kathryn Coker, and her husband, Tug.

Our approach to the design drew inspiration from a card catalog entry—simple, direct and encyclopedic in its knowledge. Kathryn gets to know every wine producer and their unique history firsthand, and the tags hanging from the wines are a reflection of that story. We created a flexible system of patterns for Esters to implement for items such as wrapping paper and collateral. The design is intentionally minimal, allowing the beautiful architectural details and lovely wines to take center stage.


Corporate Identity, Signage, Packaging, Menus, Website


Esters Wine Shop and Bar, Santa Monica, CA


Architecture: Oonagh Ryan Architects
Store photography: Emily Roth
Website development: Jonathan Wang

The icon, a bird clutching grapes in her mouth, is both delicate and whimsical, reflecting the enjoyment of taking a moment with friends. The typography mixes historic and modern elements, echoing the focus on lively conversation in a historic space.

A series of stickers and stamps were designed to be flexible and inexpensive ways for Esters to give packaging a personal touch. This also allows the design to evolve over time, patterns can be alternated, stamps placed in different places for interest, allowing the potential for every customer interaction to be a unique experience.

The menu system carries through the same graphic language, simple and delicate, allowing the ever changing beverages and (celebrated chef Jeremy Fox’s) seasonal small plates to take center stage.

The wine tags are two sided, the first suggesting pairings & providing general information, while the back dives into more detail, teaching each specific producer’s unique story.

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