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Branding

Sep 09, 2019

What Liquor Brands Should Know About Trademarks

In a recent federal court ruling, a judge articulated once again why famous brands enjoy greater rights than those that lack renown

The case pits two giants in wholly unrelated fields— clothing versus alcoholic beverages.

The lesson? Liquor sellers should exercise caution and select brand names that are not the same or are not similar to those of existing “famous” brands, even in completely unrelated fields. » Read More

Feb 07, 2019

ABC Relaxation of COLA Requirement for Intrastate Sales

Relax.  You may not always need a COLA to register your brand in New Jersey.

In a prior post, we talked about the need to obtain a COLA for New Jersey brand registration per New Jersey regulations, even if the brand is sold intrastate only, or just in your taproom (and therefore would not require a COLA under federal law).  » Read More

Jun 29, 2018

Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Affirms Fair Use of “Old Taylor” to Describe Colonel E.H. Taylor’s Historic Distillery Location

In a recent opinion, Sazerac Brands, LLC v. Peristyle, LLC, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued a decision finding in favor of a Kentucky bourbon distillery that their use of “the Former Old Taylor Distillery” or “Old Taylor” was classic fair use of Sazerac’s trademarks OLD TAYLOR and COLONEL E.H. » Read More

Jun 04, 2018

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Finds There is “Something More” Sufficient to Show That Restaurant Services are Related to Alcoholic Beverages

In In re Honeyhole Sandwiches Inc., Serial No. 87138294,  the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) agreed with the Examiner in refusing the registration of HONEYHOLE SANDWICHES because it was confusingly similar to HONEY HOLE under Section 2(d) of the Trademark Act.  » Read More

Apr 24, 2018

Mezcal Margarita, Anyone?

In the spirit of upcoming Cinco De Mayo, it’s time to think about your favorite margarita recipe.  I happen to prefer my margarita with mezcal instead of tequila.  And while mezcal, known as tequila’s spicy and smoky cousin, may certainly taste “distinctive,” the TTAB found that a bottle configuration for mezcal was not distinctive enough for registration. » Read More

Mar 12, 2018

When Your Rebranding Gets “Stone”-Walled

Earlier this month, Stone Brewing Company (“SBC”), a craft brewery in Southern California, sued Molson Coors Brewing Company and MillerCoors LLC (together “MillerCoors”) for trademark infringement and related unfair competition claims arising from MillerCoors’ use of the STONE® trademark in advertising its KEYSTONE beer.  » Read More

Nov 08, 2017

How Can a Brewery Produce Hard Cider? – Part 2: COLAs, Standards of Fill and Pa.L.C.B. Brand Registration

Hard cider (or alcoholic cider as it is commonly called) has been around for centuries, especially in Pennsylvania.  Being home to many apple orchards, Pennsylvania is starting to see numerous cideries (like a brewery, but for hard cider) popping up anywhere from apple orchards and farms to urban centers.  » Read More

Aug 21, 2017

Pa.L.C.B. Changes Procedure on Brand Registration for Breweries

UPDATED:

Effective January 1, 2018, the Pa.L.C.B. is only requiring a COLA to be obtained from the TTB, and filed with the Office of Malt Beverage Compliance, for brand registration if the brands will be sold to licensees, including restaurants, hotels, distributors, clubs and other manufacturers.  » Read More

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