On Trend: Rustic Wood – The Restaurants That Have Nailed It

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Rustic wood interior and furniture are becoming an increasingly popular choice in restaurants, cafes and bars. Rustic wood can have an array of effects within a restaurant. Some people rely on its worn appearance to create a traditional or pastoral atmosphere. Others use recycled rustic wood to reflect a dining environment that is both sustainable and organic. So if you are thinking about incorporating rustic wood into your restaurant or eatery,here are some great inspirations.

Vapiano Frankfurt, Hanauer Landstraße
Image via Stefan Funke on Flickr


The popular burger chain Grill’d are recognised for their good food and connection to good causes, but they are also renowned for their rustically inspired interiors. Some notable Grill’d restaurants, such as Eagle Street, Brisbane and Little Bourke Street, Melbourne, both designed by TU Projects have used rustic wood to reinforce their commitment to all things fresh and organic.In Grill’d eateries, rustic wood is used to panel wall surfaces and to frame the counter, chalkboard menus and table tops. Grill’d prides itself on using fresh, organic and high quality produce, and this philosophy is certainly reflected in their elegant use of rustic interior.


Vapiano, another popular restaurant chain, offers a range of fresh cuisine that is inspired by traditional Italian recipes. The restaurant brings the outdoors indoors by incorporating living olive trees and herb gardens into their restaurants. The traditional Italian inspiration and organic of their food is reflected in their rustic wooden table tops, bar surfaces, shelving and dining stools.EachVapiano restaurant is typified by its sweeping surfaces of rustic wood, that are further embellished with fresh potted herbs that either hang above or sit in the middle of the table.

Isa Restaurant

Isa restaurant located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, USA, designed by architect TaavoSomer, is regarded as one of the USA’s greatest rustic restaurants. The restaurant is almost entirely constructed of rustic wood surfaces, most of which were hand crafted by a team of woodworkers. The restaurant uses a range of aged wood, new wood, firewood, plywood and tree branches. The restaurant also incorporates a roof-top garden and drying herbs which are used in meals and to enhance the restaurant’s rustic appeal. The interior is considered as a delicate balance between rugged and refined.

Mercato Restaurant

Mercato is a coastal Italian restaurant located in Shanghai, China. The restaurant, designed by Neri&Hu, uses rustic style wooden panels for flooring, ceiling and the surface and sides of the bar. All of the wooden panels are recycled and are used in addition to exposed metal and glass surfaces in order to create an atmosphere that connects the organic,with elegant modernity.This mix of country and chic is also reflected in their menu, whereby family inspired meals are cooked by renowned chefs to achieve a simplistic yet sophisticated style.
If you want to create a dining atmosphere that is bucolic, organic or eco-friendly, you really can’t go past a little bit of rustic inspiration. So what do you think? What do you love so much about rustic wood interiors?
By Grace Patterson

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