A preliminary injunction posted on the Trademark Blog orders Brooklyn slice joint Joes Pizza of Bleecker Street to stop advertising a connection to Famous Joes Pizza of 7 Carmine Street and its original location on Bleecker Street. We havent seen a pizza-related trademark battle like this since Patsys vs. Patsys, or Rays vs. Rays!
In this case, the owner of the original Joes, Pino Pozzuoli, is suing Giuseppe Vitale, an ex-employee (and ex-son-in-law), who in 2005 opened Joes Pizza of Bleecker Street on Kings Highway in Brooklyn. Newcomer Vitale allegedly lied in a trademark application that he was the founder of the original Joes on Bleecker Street (which famously closed in 2004, leaving only the Carmine Street location). A judge has ordered him to cease using reviews and photos of the Village location in promoting the Brooklyn shop, since the Court concludes that the plaintiff is likely to prevail on its fraudulent representation claim.
Vitale can, however, continue calling himself Joes Pizza of Bleecker Street, since Joes Pizza is a pretty generic name and Pozzuoli may or may not prevail in his trademark-infringement case (after all, the unrelated Joes Pizza on Prospect Park West has been around since the sixties). Whatever the eventual outcome, theres only one Joes Pizza that Lou Reed goes to.