A Park Slope pizza parlor should make it completely clear it is bought nothing to do with a vaunted, similar-sounding slice joint in Greenwich Village, a decide dominated.
Well-known Joe’s Pizza, a melted mozzarella mecca on Carmine Avenue, sued Well-known Joe’s Pizza of the Village on Fifth Ave. in Brooklyn, saying the copycat was attempting to money in on its crust cred and sow shopper confusion.
Brooklyn Federal Decide Brian Cogan dished out a win for Well-known Joe’s Pizza on Tuesday.
Well-known Joe’s Pizza of the Village can’t use the stylized lettering utilized by Well-known Joe’s Pizza’s and or something “confusingly related,” mentioned the decide’s preliminary injunction. It could actually’t current itself in any strategy to make the pizza-eating public suppose it was related to Well-known Joe’s Pizza, Cogan added.
Nonetheless, the Park Slope pizza place did not have to vary its identify or get a brand new web site, as a result of phrases like “Well-known” and “of the Village” had been generic sufficient, Cogan dominated.
In a metropolis of cutthroat competitors for greatest slice, Well-known Joe’s has been getting shout-outs and all types of film cameos for years — from Dom DeLuise’s 1980 “Fatso” to a “Protecting Up with the Kardashians” episode final 12 months.
In the meantime, Cogan famous Well-known Joe’s of the Village bought a “gentle praise,” when Time Out New York mentioned in 2006 the pizza labored for drunks at 2 a.m.
Earlier than he launched Well-known Joe’s of the Village, Victor Zarco spent about 20 years working for Pino (Joe) Pozzuoli Sr. of Well-known Joe’s.
Cogan mentioned Zarco’s retailer had footage of him with Pozzuoli and varied massive names – an effort the decide mentioned was finished to make clients suppose his enterprise was linked to Pozzuoli.
Zarco may maintain the photographs up, so long as there was a “distinguished disclaimer,” the decide dominated.
However there’s nonetheless a number of confusion, like TripAdvisor and Yelp opinions about Well-known Joe’s Pizza which might be posted on assessment pages for Well-known Joe’s Pizza of the Village.
Cogan mentioned the vying pizzerias had been opponents in each sense of the time period and there was “widespread shopper confusion.”
It wasn’t that Well-known Joe’s of the Village was some upscale, sit-down thin-crust institution – each bought “low cost, quick, New York Metropolis pizza by the slice,” mentioned Cogan.
The difficulty is hungry buyer may’ve been trying to “purchase the slice from a distinct Joe’s Pizza franchise than the one he really bought it from.”
Attorneys for Well-known Joe’s Pizza couldn’t be reached for remark.
Zarco’s lawyer mentioned his consumer is satisified with the choice.
“The Pozzuolis had no downside having Mr. Zarco work across the clock as a pizza man for 15 years, together with on the times when Spiderman and Intercourse and the Metropolis had been filming there. However they wished a decide to silence him about all that,” lawyer Invoice Hochberg mentioned.
“He does not need to be a part of their enterprise. He’s completely satisfied to compete with them, slice-against-slice. The litigious Pozzuoli household ought to now let this mozzarella melee be determined in a court docket of pizza opinion somewhat than in U.S. District Court docket.”