Kieran Folliard, Jameson Settle “Big Ginger” Dispute
Former restaurateur Kieran Folliard and Irish whiskey giant Jameson have settled a contentious trademark dispute that went public last week.
The Star Tribune reported that Folliard confirmed the settlement and told the Minneapolis newspaper that his Irish whiskey company, 2 Gingers Whiskey, continues to own the “Big Ginger” trademark for a specialty drink that his pubs have been selling since 2005.
“We will continue to sell the Big Ginger,” Folliard told the Star Tribune on Tuesday, adding that he couldn't reveal any other terms of the settlement.
Kieran's businesses-A Kieran Collection and 2 Gingers Whiskey-had filed a lawsuit alleging that Jameson's “Big Jameson Ginger” cocktail improperly copies Folliard's signature “Big Ginger” drink-which comprises whiskey, ginger ale, and lemon and lime wedges. Folliard claimed that the words “big” and “ginger” are protected by a trademark registration that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued in 2009.
According to the Star Tribune, the settlement was announced in a letter to U.S. District Chief Judge Michael Davis; the letter reportedly asked that a February 27 hearing on a temporary restraining order be cancelled.
Last year, Folliard sold his stake in his local pubs-The Local, Kieran's Irish Pub, Cooper, and The Liffey-in order to focus on the whiskey business, as liquor laws prohibit the ownership of both a distillery arm and a retail outlet, like a bar. Folliard also swapped out much of the Jameson Irish whiskey at his four bars for 2 Gingers Whiskey.
To read the full Star Tribune report about the settlement, click here.