Canadian office Batay-Csorba Architects has recently designed a greyscale interior for the ShuckShuck sustainable oyster snack bar in Vancouver‘s Chinatown. The eatery serves Pacific oysters with unusual toppings such as maple syrup and bacon bits alongside oyster margarita shots.
The pared-back simplicity of the interior consists of stripped-back concrete floors, exposed concrete columns, concrete ceiling, mechanical ducts, and conduits. Painted acoustic wall panels combine a uniquely rough-textured appearance with unusual durability and acoustic performance. The simplistic interior yields attention to a single architectural intervention, a 56’-0” long serpentine table floats its way through the space.
The fiber-reinforced precast concrete table mediates between the interactive qualities of a loose and casual “bar top” and the intimacy and the enveloping relationship of a “booth” that wraps around you. As a standing-only restaurant, the circulation and interaction between patrons were curated to redefine placemaking of this highly social yet intimately personal environment that allows people to connect in various ways. Depending on where a patron is standing at the table their personal sense of space and level of interaction with others varies.
The texture and finish of the table were prescribed akin to an oyster. The exterior shell, often rough, grey, and drab acts to protect the delicate pearl inside. While the underside of the concrete table is executed with a rough, pocketed finish like the oyster’s shell, the exterior has a soft, smooth, polished finish. The imperfection of the color purposely celebrating the handmade process of the material.
This rough and loutish aesthetic is further contrasted with slender exposed bulbs delicately floating in a random pattern overhead, transcending the otherwise raw and unrefined palette into a peculiarly warm and enveloping atmosphere.