The high-end Winnipeg restaurant website giving people a blast from the early-internet past
The owner of Sous Sol said he found an online source for original gifs from the ‘90s to incorporate in the design. (Source: soussolosborne.com)
A Winnipeg restaurant is giving internet users a mid-to-late 90s blast from the past with a recent redesign of its website.
“We kind of like, love nostalgia at our restaurant, that had a huge part to do with it,” said Erik Thordarson, owner and operating manager of Sous Sol in Osborne Village.
Thordarson said the new website, designed to look like sites hosted on Angelfire or Geocities in decades past, was launched two months ago but started generating online conversation this week when it was shared online, on Twitter by a Sous Sol employee and on the r/Winnipeg subreddit.
Thordarson said the restaurant’s previous website was more modern, but plain, with a black and white design and a single photo.
“Just kind of got bored of looking at it,” he said.
He decided to take inspiration from marketers for the Captain Marvel movie, who promoted using a website with a similar-retro feel.
“They did a much greater job with it,” he said, explaining that he has some computer science knowledge but Sous Sol was tied to a website-building service that came with some constraints.
“I’m using the builder to emulate an old website. It does have its quirks, which I think kind of plays well with the look of it.”
He said he found an online source for original gifs from the ‘90s to incorporate in the design.
“There’s something very specific about the gifs from this era, it’s like a bad 3D rendering on them.”
Thordarson said while the images on the website may be a little wonky, it’s fully functional, which is important because many patrons need to use it in order to find the restaurant.
“It’s a little bit different than most, where it’s like, we don’t have a phone, we don’t have a sign, y’know. It can be hard to find, it can be hard to contact us, so we try to lay it out crystal clear on the website,” he said.
He said he’s been pleased with the response, which has seen people toss out jokes along with compliments.
Thordarson says while the website has an “under-construction” banner at the bottom, aside from minor tweaks, he plans to keep it as is.