Belgian Monks, Colorado Brewers Not Cool With Plagiarism

Brooklyn Brewery yanks Belgian-style bottle following copycat flap

By Elizabeth Bougerol
|  Tuesday, Nov 4, 2008  |  Updated 2:28 PM EDT
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Belgian Monks, Colorado Brewers Not Cool With Plagiarism

Flickr Creative Commons/Zak A

Brooklyn Brewery's refermented Belgian-style ale gets caught in a trademark squeeze

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And here we thought our hometown brewery was untouchable: CityRoom reports that Brooklyn Brewery prez Steve Hindy has yanked a bottle design for his 2007-launched Brooklyn Local 1, a refermented ale brewed following an old method devised by Belgian Trappist monks, because it has a distinctive double-ringed design that may or may not have been heavily influenced by a similar design on the bottles of refermented ale produced by Westmalle Abbey in Belgium and the New Belgium Brewing Company of Colorado (who apparently had to beg the monks in Old Belgium to be cool with them putting two rings on their bottles).

After ditching the initial, controversial design, Hindy had to cough up about $60,000 to implement a ring-free version (the bottles are pressed in Germany); on a positive note, no-one - monks or otherwise - is asking Brooklyn Brewery to step off producing the ale itself which, for the record, remains tasty. So to recap: Refermentation isn't trademarked, double-ringed bottles are.

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