Who are you talking to,

how are you going to say it?

Aged Rum Bar in New York




At Clyde’s, worlds collide. As the only Trinidadian-owned cocktail bar serving a well-crafted rum roster in Williamsburg, it fosters kinship among the curious and the culturally astute.


The brief

Williamsburg is "post gentrification" -- Splashy inauthentic bars and restaurants in neighborhood, people running after new trends (juice, cold brew coffee, thai restaurants...), huge chains moving into neighbourhood; sky rises, rents going up, everything expensive. A place to call your own is hard.


Project scope

Create a positioning for a Caribbean specialty rum bar

Roll out messaging to connect on social

Simple website presence



Goals + Objectives

NYC is a lonely place. It's easy to feel invisible despite being surrounded by millions of people

Create a space that embraces the warmth of the West Indians

A neighborhood hole in wall with style, that welcomes anyone

For those curious about aged rums, be the first port of call


Team + Roles

Project lead, web, illustrations - Self

Writer - Amanda Choo Quan

Identity Design - Jesse Souza

Client - Jillionaire



Project process


Location analysis

13 x internal face-to-face interviews across campuses including Trinidad, Jamaica and Barbados

5 x external interviews with key business stakeholders

2 x Focus groups across departments


Empathy mapping and Personas

Questionnaire to 4000+ Alumni on newsletter lists

Questionnaire promoted via paid social media

Analysis of results 


Analysis and summaries

The University of the West Indies supplied documentation (strategy plans, student collateral)

Institutional Advancement Assessment - Future Funds - 2012

College and Universities Advertiser Report - 2014 


It’s not who you know, it’s where you know.

Screen Shot 2017-08-07 at 10.47.24 PM.png

1. Explored profiles

Screen Shot 2017-08-07 at 10.47.38 PM.png

2. Discovered Income brackets

Screen Shot 2017-08-07 at 10.47.46 PM.png

3. Reviewed Age demographics


Visual research | Brand Attributes | Personality


Quality Craft Cocktails Warm Welcoming Rum Cocktails Caribbean Flavours Authentic Rum Shop Laid Back Speak-Easy Chill Upscale Vintage Trinidadian Brave  Unique Culture 1940S Consistent  Personality West Indians Quality Good Vibes Rum Grown Up Dark Liquor Islands Upscale Higher-End Cooking Elements Different Era Sustainable Clove Sharing Cinnamon Growth Auntie Granny Pops Pappi Nanan Creating Buzz Happy Neighbourhood Inclusive Atmosphere Established Delicious Beautiful Welcome Comfortable Amazing Atmosphere New Cool Seasoned Chill Low Lime Spiritual Key Caribbean Culture Aesthetics People Happy Liquor Old Man Hat Grandfather Observe Universe Integrity Interesting Legend Strange Funny Cat Simple Attractive Tasty Humble Destination Fast Service Affordable Memorable Openness House Made Fresh Taste Profile Created Professional Trust Gatekeepers Showmanship Honesty Patois Classics Passionate Down-To-Earth Genuine Open-Minded


The spirit of making - cocktails

Good vibrations - environment

Mystique - the story

Go brave - the personality


Brand Archetypes



"Whe horse reach, jackass  does reach an pass."

The stubborn. The obstinate. Tastemakers. They know what they want, and you can't tell them otherwise. People who like a bit of danger, a bit of risk, can sniff out the inauthentic. A silk tie askew, a boater hat on the counter of the bar—it's all about the experience, the ability to exist, comfort.




"Any time is Trinidad time."

The inventors. The creators. The DIYers. The techies. People who can recognize mastery, genius—who actively seek it. They know the difference between fresh and dried, consider texture and mouthfeel—and trust very few opinions.




"Yuh cah play mas if yuh fraid powder!"

Silent leaders, those breakway friends who just know what to do on a Friday night, take you to a speakeasy in Alphabet City where everyone's dancing bachata, no-one knows English, and you have the best time of your life.




"We jamming still."

Leftists, culture-hoppers, frequent flyers. Invest in expensive minimalism, whether clothes or Muji stationery. Handmade matters. Equitability matters. Their privilege troubles them.


Empathy Mapping and Persona profiles

We created seven internal and external personas. Matched like-minded professionals on LinkedIn and explored their goals, frustrations, and fears to hypothesize why they would not download or participate. Viewing the world through their eyes revealed the solutions that the product needed to resolve. While they felt like individuals, it was more about understanding the mindset of a target group which allowed us to make informed decisions as a group, instead of guessing or making judgement from personal taste


Trendsetters + Young & Restless A

Downtown Melting Pot


Trendsetters + Young & Restless B


What do they have in common?

Kinship Cultural Satiation Refuge Sanctuary Lowkey Exploration Uniqueness  Authenticity Quality Attention Validation (especially cultural ) Ease Genuine insiders experiences money can’t buy

What do they seek?

They're all incredibly curious, culturally astute, and are opinionated about where they should be going, what they should be drinking, what tastes good—whether it's the Trini from Flatbush who complains yet comes back, or the American in the Williamsburg or Fort Greene high-rise whose lives (and versions of it on Instagram) are incredibly well-curated. All these people have specific opinions when it comes to taste.


Williamsburg is a sea of curated content. Any bar on Bedford Ave could and probably has been featured everywhere from Time Out to Brooklyn magazine. It’s been labelled a hipster’s paradise so often that even that stereotype’s become old—and it’s so beyond gentrification’s breaking point that Starbucks and Apple and Whole Foods, the Holy Trifecta and Tippers of Scales, have moved in.

So Clyde’s needs to be 

An oasis of chill in a neighborhood constantly embellished by new trends (juice! fermentation! cold brew!). Its menu is singular and unfussy. Its aesthetic choices aren’t selected by some random designer bro in a Chinatown loft—everything from interiors to drinks to music to Clyde’s mythos are tropics-to-table, straight from the homeland, recollected by those who know best. Trinidad creates culture every day—Clyde’s is just an extension of it. This is how we overcome issues of appropriation, which our audience will be hip to. Clyde’s owns its culture. Clyde himself was a powerful, charismatic man—a master of his own mind. He associated with everyone, from government officials to market women. And this is what Clyde’s must become—a place welcome to those who seek it. The final destination of twin signposts in Flatbush or Fort Greene. A place without snark, or irony, where the write-ups in the Times will be good, but the Yelp reviews even better. Clyde's will be a mixing pot the same way Trinidad is—at least, every good bar in Trinidad.


An idea that's big

Kindred Spirit


At Clyde’s, worlds collide. As the only Trinidadian-owned cocktail bar serving a well-crafted rum roster in Williamsburg, it fosters kinship among the curious and the culturally astute.


Brand development & assets


Meet Clyde - The Persona comes to life