Mochiya describes the mochi ‘pillows’ it creates as “little clouds of ice cream or sorbet enrobed in sweet rice-dough”. Founded by CEO Shuji Shimizu and Swiss-British chef Florian Bouquin, the brand is a new competitor in the growing UK mochi market, which has already spawned successful brands including Little Moons.
London-based branding agency Regular Practice is behind the design of the brand, which began with a “wordmark-centred approach” according to co-founder and creative director Kristoffer Sølling. “We took our visual cues from the multisensory experience of the product — the texture, the colour, the inherently playful characteristic of the food,” he says.
“The brand itself was inspired by the product’s pillow-like shape, fluffy texture and uplifting mouthfeel,” continues Tom Finn, co-founder and managing director. “After sitting around our studio table together and trying the range of flavours and teas on offer we were hooked.”
The Mochiya branding and website include a mix of shots of the product being created – which help illuminate what it contains to the uninitiated – and illustrations of the mochi, as well as a charming brand mascot.
“Nothing of this quality really exists in the UK,” says strategy director Ed Little of the brand’s ambitions. “Little Moons dominates the market, with little or no competition. We wanted to create a high-end alternative more akin to luxury chocolate that could work both in the best department stores as well as their own signature tea rooms in due course.”