Just thinking about a divine steak at Loetje gets your mouth watering. Café Loetje was founded nearly forty years ago as pool café that also served food. Medium rare and served in gravy, steaks are the same now as they were then. They were such a huge success that the pool tables soon had to make way for extra tables to seat more diners. With currently twelve branches in the Netherlands, Loetje has become a household name. Good news for residents of Rotterdam: this year in April Loetje will open a new restaurant in the port city.
Food for the gods
The secret of the Loetje steak is that it is more than just a delicious steak. It is also about the divine gravy. The hype that surrounds the Loetje steak is the envy of many restaurants. Not surprisingly, there have been many attempts to imitate the Loetje steak. The “Loetje steak” has even featured on other restaurants’ menus! Guests familiar with the Loetje concept know that the steak is served in gravy. The name Loetje is often associated with steak, and steak with Loetje. Plenty of reason to protect and monitor the trademark to ensure Loetje’s exclusive right to the name.
How to protect a steak?
The recipe for the steak as such cannot be protected against infringement. And it isn’t a world secret anyway. The LOETJE name, however, is subject to trademark rights and therefore closely monitored for infringement. If a menu is spotted that refers to the “Loetje steak”, one call or letter from Onel is often enough to stop the use. Most restaurant owners don’t even know that they are infringing the Loetje trademark.
Every now and again, Onel needs to take extra legal steps to demonstrate the implications of a trademark infringement. But with Onel’s experience and expertise, it rarely leads to a court case.
Having a legal partner who will act on your behalf in case of trademark infringement is crucial, as is close monitoring of a famous trademark like LOETJE. It helps infringing parties from hitching a ride on the back of a trademark’s success.