–Sharon Armstrong, Attorney
There’s been a lot of ink spilled on Duets Blog about the long saga of the Tavern on the Green, here, here and here. The last we heard, back in March of 2010, was that a judge had ordered the cancellation of the trademark registration for TAVERN ON THE GREEN mark in connection with restaurant services on the basis of fraud, and found that the City of New York is the owner of the mark.
Now, a licensing company has agreed to pay $1.3 million to use the name Tavern on the Green for restaurants outside of metropolitan New York, under a deal approved by Tavern’s bankruptcy trustee. Under the terms of an earlier settlement, “metropolitan New York” is defined as including New York state, Connecticut, New Jersey, and part of Pennsylvania. The new licensing company, Tavern International, can license the name in connection with restaurants and products outside of this area and on products.
The former operators of the restaurant had begun using the name on a line of salad dressings, but the judge never ruled on the former owners’ right to use the name in this capacity. So, it remains to be seen whether “Tavern on the Green”-brand condiments, prepared foods and other items will hit the store shelves. Should readers of this blog in California, Maine, Florida and all points in between come across such a product, please let us know.