Kasztelan (eng : Castellan) is a beer from Sierpc, a regional brewery belonging to Carlsberg. Most poles associate the brand with the unpasteurized variety, which made it into the mainstream a few years ago riding the wave of popularity of other unpasteurized beers. With time, as the trend for unpasteurized beers declined, so did the gains in market share.
However, it was not the unpsateurized Kasztelan that enjoyed the greatest recognition and respect of the local community in the town of Sierpc, where the brewery is located. The townsfolk preferred the regular variety of Kasztelan, the Jasne Pelny beer, which was considered good and reasonably priced. Unfortunately – in contrast to the quality brew – the visual language of the packaging became outdated. There was little potential to breathe new life into the brand without changing the look.
Dragon Rouge was tasked with revitalizing the brand. The new branding relied on regionalism and location – Sierpc being the original brewery of the Kasztelan Jasne Pelny beer.
design strategy & shape:
The craft beer revolution, which transformed the polish beer market in recent years, has led to elevated expectations among beer consumers. We understood that the key approach that would effectively position Kasztelan as a regional beer was authenticity and bold narrative. Otherwise the brand would not get noticed in the crowded category.
There would be ne Kasztelan without the town of Spierpc. The origin of the brand was tied to the history of Spierc. We believed that our design had to ring true for the town people of Sierpc who worked on the production of Kasztelan. If the brand made the local people proud, the rest of the poles would also believe in it. We wanted to create a design without pretence, without beating about the bush, without overcomplicating. At the same time, we wanted to make the most of the location of the brewery – the town of Sierpc. This meant creating new visual brand assets inspired by the town, its regional culture and history.
Our strategy involved tapping into the wealth of regional heritage. The approach was aptly expressed by the slogan used in the tv campaign of Kasztelan: “Racz wasc wpasc (loosely translated as “pray, come over sire”). The expression is a blend of a historical honorific wasc (sire), an old polish politeness term racz (pray) and a modern colloquial phrase wpasc (to come over). Linguistically, it connects history with the present. We have managed to combien tradition with today’s beer culture codes in creating the new Kasztelan packaging.
We reformulated the word mark by adding the “Duma browaru Sierpc” (eng : Pride of the Sierpc brewery) caption to reference the provenance of Kasztelan. We created a unique coat of arms inspired by the emblem of Sierpc and depicting locally sourced ingredients such as double-row barley, water and hops. The iconic Castellan figure received a face lift. A simplistic illustration was replaced by an engraving depicting our Castellan raising a glass in a toast-making gesture. The outline of the label was inspired by the local architecture of Sierpc.
A distinctive typographic style, inspired by old labels was used, the text was stylized to resemble and old-fashioned invitation or an advertisement. To revamp the look, we made visual references to the art of embroidery and used unique romantic looking, organic shapes. The new elements were to be used at all points of contact ensuring distinctiveness of all visuals.
As a result of a full re-launch, the way the Kasztelan brand communicates at almost all points of contact has been transformed. Above all, the brand managed to regain its share of the market by once again attracting and audience willing to buy into the unique narrative.
Following the relaunch, the sales of unpasteurized beers have stabilised and the status os Jasne Pelny as a full-fledged alternative to other household lagers has been assured.