Italian fresh filled pasta brand La Famiglia Rana has launched in the UK with a pop-up grocery store in London. Framing its pre-prepared product alongside fresh ingredients, the store is as much a feast for the eyes as it is for the taste buds. Innovation researchers Harriet Cox and Matilde Ricon Peres paid a visit to the store to find out how the company is bringing its brand to life for social media.
Located on London’s affluent Marylebone High Street, the La Famiglia Rana Grocer is designed for Instagram. The outside of the store is covered in greenery, drawing you inside where the natural theme continues.
Visual merchandising is satisfyingly organised by colour with marble backdrops, fresh produce and flowers creating zones for different La Famiglia Rana recipes at the heart of each display. Aiming to pay homage to the beauty of Italian ingredients, the brand has stocked the store with the finest high-end products from Italy’s best producers, growers and small artisan suppliers, most of which are hard to source in the UK. Placing its pasta amongst these items puts the brand in good company, conveying the quality of its product and telling the story of the lifestyle associated with the brand. There are also recipe cards in each zone tying all the merchandise together.
Beyond being just a styling exercise, everything in-store is available to buy, including a curated selection of table and kitchenware. Creating a foodie’s creative playground, the brand is also using the space to run workshops so that customers can learn more about both the brand and the pasta.
Ready for Instagram
The workshops have a social media slant with experiences on offer including food photography skills ‘to get that perfect Instagram-worthy content’, how to prepare fresh pasta meals, and ingredient tastings. With an “infinite number of combinations of beautiful produce, backdrops and tableware all free for customers to use,” store-assistants are on hand to help customers “build stunning sets and original arrangements”.
Customers visiting the pop-up can also buy Instagram meal kits created in partnership with London-based chef Skye Gyngell. Each kit includes a plate, ‘restaurant-quality’ plating instructions and a wooden spoon in addition to the filled pasta – effectively giving consumers everything they need to create beautiful pictures to post online. “The world’s obsession with photographing our food has fuelled a rise in all sorts of odd-but-edible inventions, turned humble vegetables into mega-trends, transformed restaurant diners into paparazzi and inspired home chefs to spread their wings,” says Gyngell. “Anything that inspires people to be adventurous and creative – and proud of what they’ve prepared – is a wonderful thing.”
There are six different recipes available and all proceeds from the meal kits (and the master classes) will be donated to food bank charity FoodCycle. Visitors to the store are actively encouraged by staff to post their images to social media, with the best photos on Instagram each week being rewarded with brand-related prizes.
The pop-up is open for a 5-week residency, until Sunday December 16. Full address: 51 Marylebone High St, Marylebone, London W1U 5HW