Proposed “Twilight” theme restaurant has trouble with name

FORKS — Owners of Dazzled by Twilight who are planning the opening of a new restaurant next year in Forks are pondering their next step after a Seattle restaurant said naming it Volterra would be a trademark violation.

The Seattle establishment Volterra Restaurant, 5411 Ballard Ave. N.W., is registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for the use of the word for restaurants, bars and sale of spices, and it threatened to sue if the Forks couple didn’t change the name.

Tim Root, who co-owns Dazzled by Twilight with his wife, Annette, said they received notification on Saturday. They are contemplating the next step and will likely rethink the name.

“We really just found out, and we’ll have to talk to our own attorney,” Tim Root said.

Annette said that although that Volterra was the planned name, it was only a “working name.”

Tim said that he believed a solution was in sight.

‘Reasonable solution’

“I’m sure we will have a very reasonable solution,” he said.

“We were not looking to cause any trouble, and we didn’t even know that they existed and didn’t intend to infringe on their rights.”

In a letter to the couple, the Seattle Volterra Restaurant’s attorney, Jefferson Coulter, wrote: “While you may have been unaware of the existence of Volterra, your use of a confusingly similar name negatively impacts the goodwill built by Volterra over the last several years, violating Washington and Federal law.

“As such, we demand that you immediately cease and desist from all further use of the name ‘Volterra’ in connection with your proposed restaurant.”

The Seattle Volterra is not connected to the Twilight phenomenon, Coulter noted.

The name was trademarked in 2006.

Coulter also said the restaurant is prepared to pursue legal action if the name is eventually chosen.

“We hope that putting you on notice of Volterra’s superior rights will be sufficient to resolve this matter,” he wrote.

“However, Volterra is prepared to take all available measures — including filing a lawsuit against you — to enforce its rights to the trademark and trade names that it has spent years developing.”

The Forks restaurant, which will be located at 81 N. Forks Ave., is still in the development phase.

“We are very adamant about the restaurant and we will open it,” Root said.

“But we will see what we need to do about the naming situation.”

The couple already operate the Twilight Lounge out of the location and hope to open the restaurant sometime next spring.

The lounge is a place where concerts and activities for Twilight fans have been held.

Every Saturday the store hosts an activity for fans, and on Halloween it held a special “Scaryoke” event.

Dazzled by Twilight is a themed store that sells merchandise relating to the Twilight saga.

Twilight and its three sequels were written by Stephenie Meyer. They have sold millions of copies worldwide.

The story, which is set in Forks, tells the story of Bella Swan and her vampire love interest, Edward Cullen. The sequels bring in her best friend, Jacob Black, who also tries to woo Bella in the second and third books.

Volterra, which is a city in Italy, is, in the Twilight universe, a reference to the place where the vampire aristocracy dwell.

The aristocracy are known as the Volturi and, in addition to being some of the oldest vampires in existence, are known for their immense powers.

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Reporter Paige Dickerson can be reached at 360-417-3535 or at paige.dickerson@peninsuladailynews.com.

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