Working with a master.

Sometime, ranging a year or more back, I’d worked with Paul Bertolli. And a friend — Stephen Darland. Stephen was the one that introduced me; and he and Paul needed help in defining, creating a brand that evolved around the concept of salumi. This speaks to the italian character of cured meats, something that has evolved since Roman times. It’s a tradition that is, in fact, a world heritage — and likely nomadic in character. Travels well; lasts a long time; holds food in a sense of relative stability. But the depth of the character of the product relates to the density of a number of factors. The quality of the meats themselves, the spices, the actual curing and bacterial flavoring (the dusting of white powder you see on the casings) and how this amalgam creates the depth of quality in taste.

And it’s always about that, isn’t it? Depth. But in my experience in working with closely with this man, this team, it’s about the nature of thoughtful development, that makes this exploratory compelling. So our working, opening session, one day in length, ranged from tasting tea, to hand baked breads, opening samplings of product, wine essentials, pastas and salad, desserts.

But the binding development was reaching into Paul, and into the mind of the master visionary. Paul’s experience,Paul’s Bio, has always been contemplative and historically defining. He reaches back to get to the heart of things — and in working that day in creating the essential characteristics of the brand, that’s what we did — contemplate the heart and build out the visioning of the brand. The visioning, then the visuals. And in this way, the sense of history, the layering of patterns, the colors all reach to gathering Paul’s sensitivities.

Paul said this about us:
“Through our close collaboration, Tim Girvin gathered his impressions of our brand—its traditional reference, its layered texture and taste. Through his hand, Tim channeled our “brand language”, faithfully representing the mission, vision, and values of Fra’ Mani. Our brand already looks famous. I am very proud.”

And in all of our relationships, there’s real pleasure, there’s real learning, in working with the impassioned, the committed, the Masters. Because in this context, it becomes about the gift of a new seeing, more so than merely crafting strategy and visual solutions. That’s the space that we like to be in.


TSG | m a d i s o n p a r k | n y c