As Brew Fish Bar and Eatery in Marion looks to grow its brand, it is becoming more protective of a trademark it sought nearly a decade ago.

Posting on social media this week, the restaurant subtly reminded other local restaurants using the officially trademarked name for its special soup.

The original menu created Ch’ale (right in the home test kitchen of owners Todd and Erin Zell). It’s a combination of Kale soup (local favorite) and Clam Chowder (another favorite). Weird name, but knocked it out of the park! We knew we had something unique and special.🍲 We’ve since trademarked the name and the soup. So if you see it anywhere besides Brew Fish…it’s a copycat and not the original.

While it's difficult to protect a recipe from being duplicated, a name for a recipe is definitely something that can be trademarked and enforced. The "Ch'ale" name of the soup served at Brew Fish falls in that category. Brew Fish took such care in trademarking the name, "we actually trademarked it with and without the apostrophe," owner Erin Zell said.

Zell said she believes several SouthCoast restaurants have knowingly or unknowingly been using Brew Fish's trademarked "Ch'ale" name.

For instance, a Jan. 25 Standard-Times roundup of local soups referred to the one at Cove Surf and Turf in New Bedford as "chale":

"Two local favorites are combined into one excellent bowl of soup at Cove Surf and Turf.  Chale soup is a creamy, mildly spicy combination of New England clam chowder and Portuguese kale soup with baby clams, butter and cream, fresh-cut veggies, chunks of tender beef, local linguica, and a tasteful blend of spice and herbs."

When we spoke with the Cove's owner, Jesse DeSouza, he was stunned to hear that the soup's name was trademarked.

"Oh boy," he said. "I'm going to have to fix that. The funny thing is I got the idea to serve ch'ale from a Fun 107 article a few years ago."

DeSouza took action immediately to remedy the situation.

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"I'm actually shutting it off of my online menu as we speak. I don't mess around with legalities like trademarks and copyrights."

On Friday afternoon, the Cove ended up renaming the item on its website "kale chowder."

Brew Fish is tightening up its trademark on advice from its lawyer as it gets ready to distribute the popular soup to local supermarkets under the Ch'ale brand name.

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