(Seattle, WA) – Elysian Brewing Co. Co-Founder, Dick Cantwell, updated BeerPulse on this week’s report regarding Coronado Brewing Co.’s May lawsuit. Coronado sued Elysian for allegedly infringing on the company’s ‘Idiot’ trademark that it uses on an IPA.
Cantwell confirms that Coronado has not yet formally withdrawn the lawsuit but is able to share the following:
I can say that we’ve agreed not to use the word Idiot in the future. The beer in question will be called Savant. As we would with any of our colleagues in the craft brewing industry we will welcome our friends at Coronado to our local market, once they get here. I doubt that we will be collaborating with them on any projects.
In a statement on Wednesday evening, Coronado CEO, Ron Chapman, suggested that the two companies “may explore cooperative projects with one another.” It doesn’t look like we will be seeing a Collaboration, Not Litigation Ale redux from the two anytime soon, however.
As for the name, “Savant,” it appears to be free to use on a beer, according to the USPTO trademark database. A winery did just register the name in June. Though it isn’t as common to see producers go after one another across beverage categories, it does happen. Recall that Firestone Walker had to get a new name for Abacus due to a winery’s trademark. And let’s never forget that the maker of Monster Energy Drink went after Rock Art Brewery.
On a related note, we were recently contacted by a startup in California, wanting to name themselves Analog Ales and offering us a thousand dollars for use of the word Analog, since we brewed a beer called that a year or so ago. We have agreed to let them use the name, but the price we asked was one dollar. I predict that there will be many such confluences of inspiration in the future within our industry, with many different types of outcome.
Expect to see BeerPulse unearth some of these cases going forward.