The Name Game

Chefs share insights from increasingly common trademark disputes

Chef ImageWhen chef Waldy Malouf opened Waldy’s Wood Fired Pizza & Penne in New York City, in 2006, he decided to name the restaurant after himself, as many rising chefs do.

“I foolishly named it Waldy’s,” Malouf said.

At the time, Malouf was best known for Beacon, his New American restaurant, also in New York City.

“Having a fairly good reputation as a chef and a wood-burning fire expert, an unusual name — I thought it’d be good,” he said.

It did turn out to be good, but not for Malouf.

A few years in, Malouf and his then-business partner, Rob Dixon, had a falling-out about the direction of the restaurant that pit them against one another in a legal battle. In 2010, after he said a judge continued to side with his partner, Malouf walked away from what he called “an unhealthy situation,” leaving the business with his name behind. Today, the namesake restaurant is still open, although Malouf is no longer involved. Dixon was not available to respond by press time.

Malouf’s story is not unique.

Read more…

Source: Restaurant Hospitality

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