Although recently sushi rolls have been associated with delivery and fast food practices, for the Russian Restaurant Chain Tanuki they still are primarily a Japanese specialty. To accentuate this approach, the restaurant chain has started its redesign. Family format of the restaurants will be preserved, but the updated interiors will attract not only those who choose to dine with family or in a company of friends. It is also the couples who will want to stop by and try delicious foods from the non-delivery Asian cuisine range and have some wine in the updated Tanuki. The new restaurants will have more open spaces and art objects in wabi-sabi aesthetic, which is distinguished by simple shapes and the imperfection of natural materials.
Designer: ARCHPOINT Bureau
Photographer: Olga Melekestseva
The flagship two-story restaurant with an updated design has already opened on Krasnaya Presnya. If previously when entering the restaurant the guests almost immediately found themselves at the partition that served as an invitation to search for a cozy corner, now there is a community table for 10-12 people right in front of the entrance. It is situated closely to the illuminated bar counter, an uncharacteristic object for traditional restaurants of this particular chain. The customer who had ordered a new look did not immediately accept such speaking interior at the entrance, but the designers convinced their client: if you do a redesign, the guests should immediately read its meaning.
The new restaurant features the same cozy booths that regular customers of the Tanuki adore, but there are only a few of them now. They are located on the ground floor behind the ornately shaped partitions made of light plywood with round cutouts. The main area of the dining halls on both floors has been designed as an open space. It is delineated only by metal chiselled "bamboo thickets" with illumination, tubs with potted plants and columns decorated with sculptured concrete tiles.
Terracotta has been chosen as the main colour scheme of the interior. Even the lampshades and teapots that hang above the tables are made from terracotta clay. There is a relief pattern on the walls that looks as if it has been made of bricks, and there are also convex spirals in some places on the ceiling. The choice for wooden furniture, soft sofas and armchairs has been made in favour of natural discreet colors. The emphasis in furniture design has been also made on reliefs and carvings. They can be found, for instance, on many tabletop fragments in the restaurant.
This neutral colour environment can also boast eye-catching details: bespoke blue ceramic sconces and voluminous red art objects that look like stone eggs. The design is still strongly associated with Japan, but it now has a more modern feel. However, teapots standing on coals like they do in traditional Japanese houses are also present here: an entire showcase in the bar counter is filled with them. The open kitchen with a sushi bar serves as the main decoration of the second floor.
The minimalist Japanese wabi-sabi design and open floor plan will be the defining feature of new Tanuki restaurants that are scheduled to open soon.