Over the course of nearly 20 years, Malibu Kitchen has established itself as an upscale deli & bakery in Malibu, California. The restaurant has gained popularity through a mixed crowd from locals to tourists to celebrities.
However, there is now a Malibu Kitchen inside of The Ned in London, boasting a menu of flatbreads and rice bowls. The Ned is a hotel and private members’ club operating under Soho House, owned by Nick Jones. According to the Malibu Times, Malibu Kitchen’s celebrity owners—Mel Gibson, Whoopi Goldberg, John Mellencamp, and Barbra Streisand—have hired Beverly Hills attorney Perry C. Wander to send a cease-and-desist letter to Soho House for infringing on their intellectual property rights.
Malibu Kitchen believes that Soho House intentionally stole the famous restaurant’s trademark. Jones opened a Soho House in Malibu last year, one mile from Malibu Kitchen, and has recently opened Malibu Kitchen in London.
It’s a common practice to use locations and cities in trademark names to conjure the feeling of that particular place and expand internationally. The New York Times called the London Malibu Kitchen a “California Dream, but No Palm Trees” restaurant. Will the original Malibu Kitchen be able to win in the end?