Eel River Brewing, a craft beer brewer, claims that is has exclusive rights to “California Blonde.” As far as beer goes, that is. Not anything else related to blondes from California or elsewhere. It appears that a competing craft beer brewer, Duck Foot, is calling its suds "California Blonde.” So Eel River filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Duck Foot.
A quick visit to the Trademark Office shows that Eel River Brewing does, indeed, own the trademark “California Blonde®.” It is U.S. Trademark Registration 2280172 and it was granted way back in 1999. Did they have craft brewers back in 1999?
So – without dispensing legal advice – it appears that Eel Brewing has a pretty solid claim for trademark infringement. We suggest that Duck Foot Brewing drop “California Blonde” and find something else to call its light and delicious brew. We’d also re-think “Duck Foot.” And, while we are on the topic, what’s with “Eel River?” Who comes up with these company names?
California Blonde is a registered trademark of Eel River Brewing Co., Inc.