Dingbats and Ale: Magic Hat Sues Lexington-Based West Sixth Brewing Company

It's all about "starbursts" and "dingbats."
It's all about "starbursts" and "dingbats." Photo: Magic Hat, West Sixth Brewing

In response to what it says amounts to a sneaky move, the company that makes Magic Hat beer has filed a federal lawsuit against the Lexington, Kentucky-based West Sixth Brewing Co. over similarities between the two companies’ logos. (See them side-by-side here for comparison.) Florida Ice & Farm, the company that owns Magic Hat, claims it first tried negotiating with the start-up brewer last year after a wholesaler alerted them to the logos, which both feature numbers and stars in a round-label setting. Magic Hat alleges West Sixth’s owners agreed to modify their design, but then “abruptly changed their minds” and initiated a grassroots-y social media campaign targeting the Costa Rica-based parent company.

The Kentucky brewery announced it had been the target of “corporate bullying” and published an open letter asking beer lovers to sign a petition to get Magic Hat to lay off. “They call our six an ‘inverted nine,’ rather than an entirely separate number,” West Sixth co-owner Ben Self tells WFPL. “Which is pretty silly, everybody knows that a six and a nine are not the same thing.”

Lexington Brewery West Sixth Locked In Trademark Dispute With Magic Hat Brewing Co. [WFPL]
Magic Hat Responds to West Sixth Social Media Campaign Over Logo Design Lawsuit -Full Legal Documents [My Beer Buzz]