By CHLOE – Chloe Coscarelli, a vegan chef – changed its name to Beatnic as a tribute to its original restaurant located in Greenwich Village.
Vegan restaurant By CHLOE will rebrand as Beatnic following a long legal battle over the name. This newly-named Beatnic chain will continue to serve the menu as vegan but its branding will change to a beat-oriented logo and packaging and marketing, which is expected to be finished by September 2021. The new name of the chain is a tribute to the iconic branch that is the chain, By CHLOE that opened on the 15th of July in The Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City, which was a popular Beatnik hangout during the 1960s.
“There has been a magic to this concept since the first day on Bleecker Street,” Greg Golkin, the Managing Director for Kitchen Fund and an investor in Beatnic, told. “While there is no doubt that the Guac Burger and Quinoa Taco Salad have fanatical followings but the brand’s daringness and wit are what sets the brand apart. Its new brand name is set to highlight this progressive spirit, while also affirming the importance of an affordable vegan-friendly experience.”
Legal Conflict over By CHLOE
A large part of the attraction of By CHLOE, which is now Beatnic, was cultivated by the restaurant’s co-founder and renowned vegan cook, Chloe Coscarelli. In the year 2015, Coscarelli and Samantha Wasser – daughter of the company’s financial advisor James Haber, CEO of the restaurant group ESquared Hotelity – opened their first By CHLOE outpost, serving high-end Vegan fast food.
The restaurant’s vibrant menus and delicious desserts were the ideas of Coscarelli, who at 23 years old, was the first winner following a vegan diet in any Food Network competition when she took home Cupcake Wars in 2010. The idea quickly expanded from its first Greenwich Village outpost to 14 locations and one in London and the company raised $31 million in 2018, with the intention of opening 20 more locations across the United States, Europe, and in the Middle East.
In the midst of CHLOE’s growing popularity, Coscarelli was removed by her collaborators in the year 2016. To defend the rights of her fans, Coscarelli has filed a number of lawsuits against trademark violations and infringement of her right to publicity and copyright infringement as well as other claims.
“From the day I began this journey, my goal was to create a fun, friendly restaurant that showcased how delicious vegan food can make a powerful and positive impact in the world–a belief that has never for a moment wavered,” Coscarelli stated to VegNews in an interview from 2017. “To me, being vegan is more than a way to conduct business. It’s an act of generosity, a commitment to sustainability and compassion. It’s a lifestyle that I have adopted over 10 years ago and I will always admire, advocate for and fight for.”
In December 2020 in December 2020, a New York judge gave Coscarelli 50 percent ownership of the business, which applied for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last year. At that point, Coscarelli stated that she had planned on bidding for the business, but the process had been closed.
“One key ruling in that proceeding was that (By CHLOE parent company) BC Hospitality Group could not sell the By CHLOE trademark without Chloe’s consent, so the company had to rebrand after bankruptcy,” Coscarelli’s lawyer Patrick Arenz, Esq. explained to VegNews. “Chloe is pleased that her name is no longer associated with the restaurants.”
In the course of 2021’s litigation, Coscarelli secured another victory in a separate portion of the legal fight in which the judge Jesse Furman of the US District Court in Manhattan delivered an opinion and an order finding ESquared accountable for violating agreements with Coscarelli and awarded attorney’s fees as well as costs to her.
The Latest on Beatnic
After facing the legal fight, bankruptcy proceedings, and the pandemic, the brand new Beatnic company now operates on 10 sites located in New York, NY; Providence, RI; and Boston, MA.
Haber is no longer with the company since the spring of 2017 and Catey Mark Meyers, the chief of staff was promoted to the position of president. The principal Greenwich Village location of the chain is scheduled to reopen in September with a brand new look.
“The rebrand is more than an overhaul of our visual identity but also an homage to our history as trailblazers in the plant-based category. While our product values have not changed, we are doubling down on our mission to delight both vegans and non-vegans alike with a robust culinary innovation pipeline that has broad appeal,” Mark Meyers explained. “From our management to our store teams to our investors, we’ve assembled the most agile team in the company’s history, and we are all fiercely committed to delivering a bold product. We have the benefit of rebuilding from the insights of this past year of pain points as we tighten up our business model and enhance all elements of the experience.”
Most recently, Beatnic has partnered with NYC institution, Big Gay Ice Cream. They plan to develop their first vegan collection of sweet treats. These will be sold at all Beatnic sites starting on June 6th, 2022.