Architecture | Hospitality and Residential | Boka Restaurant Group |

Duck Duck Goat

Boka Restaurant Group | Chicago | 2016

In our fifth collaboration with Boka Restaurant Group and our third with AvroKO, we designed architectural lighting and controls that enhance the “everytown Chinatown” concept for the restaurant, kitchen and back-of-house areas.

What It Was

Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard’s new restaurant Duck Duck Goat offers a tongue-in-cheek homage to Chinese-American cuisine and food culture—from its deliberately kitschy picture menus to its fortune-and-almond-cookie parting gift. The interiors follow suit. Design firm AvroKO channeled Chinatowns across the U.S. at the 100-seat restaurant that is divided into five spaces, each with its own personality.

What We Did

In our fifth collaboration with Boka Restaurant Group and our third with AvroKO, we designed architectural lighting and controls that enhance the “everytown Chinatown” concept for the restaurant, kitchen and back-of-house areas. Beginning with the entryway, which is styled as a Chinatown storefront, and carrying through into the main bar and five dining rooms that encircle it, we added subtle layers of LED lighting that reinforce the unique design identity of each space. In one dining room, track lights tucked away in the black ceiling above reveal the quintessential Chinese takeout boxes displayed on wall-mounted shelving. Color-tunable lamps were used throughout to enrich the color palette in each space, which ranges from Szechuan-spicy red to cool jade. A comprehensive but easy-to-use lighting control system enables restaurant staff to set the right mood with one click on a preprogrammed digital device. We specified and commissioned a DALI-based system to provide seamless, low-level dimming without flicker.

Why It Worked

As part of the team that designed BRG’s Japanese restaurant Momotaro—which received “Best Restaurant Design” in the 2015 Jean Banchet Awards for Culinary Excellence—we know how to create a winning design. At Duck Duck Goat, we partnered with AvroKO again to craft an entirely original concept sure to impress guests and critics alike. Photos by Anthony Tahlier, courtesy of Boka Restaurant Group