Colorado's two best-known sour-beer specialists are puckering up for a fight at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office over three beer names that the companies both use. The battle will pit Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, which has been in Denver since 2010, against Trinity Brewing, founded in Colorado Springs in 2008.
Both have garnered high praise nationwide for their Belgian-style sour and wild ales. Most of these beers take months or years to make; they're aged in wooden barrels with wild yeast or bacteria.
Beginning in December, Trinity began trademarking several dozen beer names, including those of some of its most well-known offerings, including TPS Report, Saison Man and Red Swingline. But on June 25, Crooked Stave notified the federal agency's Trial and Appeal Board that it plans to protest Trinity's protection of three of those names: Primitif, Three Flowers Saison Vieille and Mr. Saison Saison Vieille.
Crooked Stave didn't say why it is protesting, but the brewery makes beers that also use the words Primitif and Vieille.
The USPTO case follows a similar dispute last year in which Trinity filed a cease-and-desist order against Crooked Stave in El Paso County Court over the word Primitif.
Trinity owner Jason Yester declined to comment on the situaiton based on the advice of his attorney.
Crooked Stave founder Chad Yakobson also declined to discuss the situation. "Given the legal nature of this matter," he said, "Crooked Stave is not in a position to comment."
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.