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Brighton's not big enough for two pizza daddies, suit charges

A man who bought a pizza place called Big Daddy's on Western Avenue in Brighton in June is suing the brother of the man he bought it from for setting up a place called Big Daddy's Famous Pizza just 2 1/2 miles away on Chestnut Hill Avenue, saying the saucy move is costing him dough by confusing even some of his more loyal customers.

In a trademark and unfair-competition suit filed yesterday in Suffolk Superior Court, Navdeep Singh's Ghotra Bros. LLC, says it bought the Western Avenue Big Daddy's in June from Steven Weinstein, who had been running the place since 1985. Ghotra Bros. alleges that Weinstein told him that part of the deal was that the name was registered for exclusive use in Massachusetts, that he had registered "Big Daddy," "Big Daddy Pizza" and "Big Daddy's Restaurant" with the Secretary of State in 2003.

But, the complaint continues, just before Ghotra Bros. took over Big Daddy's, Weinstein's brother, Glenn, set up shop as Big Daddy's Famous Pizza, with an address of 356 Chestnut Hill Ave. That's the same address as the Circle Pizza and Tavern, which moved into the space in 2019, two years after the trouble-plagued Agoros shut. On a visit today, the storefront still shows the place called the Circle, as does the city's food-license database. However, one of the phone numbers listed on the window of the restaurant's semi-detached pizza stand is the same as that listed on the Big Daddy's Famous Pizza Web site. Records at the Secretary of State's office show Big Daddy's Famous owned by an LLC headed by Glenn Weinstein's wife, set up on June 29.

But even without any apparent physical storefront, the owner of the Western Avenue Big Daddy's charges, he is losing business, because so many people now order food online - and the Chestnut Hill Avenue's online storefront is drawing clicks away from the Western Avenue place:

Many customers of the Plaintiff have been misled to believe when searching on-line and ordering food for pick-up that they have been ordering from the restaurant located at 436 Western Avenue, Brighton, Massachusetts when in fact they have ordered from the restaurant at 356 Chestnut Hill Avenue, Brighton Massachusetts.

These customers have complained to the Plaintiff that they have ordered food on-line for pick-up and when the customers present themselves at the 436 Western Avenue, Brighton, Massachusetts location, they have been disappointed and confused to discover they are at the wrong restaurant.

The complaint alleges Glenn Weinstein ignored a cease-and-desist letter from Ghotra Bros.' attorney, forcing the concern to go to court, where it is asking a judge to issue a temporary injunction to make Weinstein stop the alleged nonsense until at least a jury can hear the case, after which, assuming the jury agrees Weinstein is in the wrong, he can be barred permanently from using the name and made to pay damages.

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PDF icon Complete complaint116.89 KB

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Comments

This nonsense that's been perpetrating for years now (ever since online order/delivery has grown) has to end.

All of these microwave kitchens like TGIFridays have "ghost kitchens" where they register a new name like Super New Wing Place (because nobody wants TGIF microwave wings if they knew what they were getting), setup a basic ordering website, get listed on Yelp, etc. to be found where people search for dinner choices, and then when the orders come in, the sit-down joint just makes the food for an Uber driver to come pick it up and deliver it. The person thinks they found a new wing joint in town, but if they do the homework they'd realize the address, etc. is just TGIF d/b/a Super New Wing Place.

This guy just learned it from them and decided to try and horn in on his family's good (business) name as the next evolution of the ghost kitchen concept.

If a company is d/b/a it should have to be listed front and center on the site.

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Voting closed 17

Anything on Ubereats or Doordash that isn't familiar to me gets an instant Google street view for the real name of the restaurant

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Voting closed 7

I thought the ghost kitchens were the ones that don't have a pick up address on DoorDash like Burrito Heaven or a new Beast Burger place.

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Voting closed 7

At least from my experience...

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Voting closed 9

I never order from places I've never actually seen in person (or ate at)

Not only for Ghost Kitchens.. but nothings worse than trying a new place and it just being garbage. And then you're stuck eating Oreos after because you threw out dinner cuz it was so bad.

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Voting closed 10

I've ordered from ghost kitchens but never without finding reviews first! To be fair I've had some pretty horrid experiences from real restaurants too. For my birthday I went out of my way to pick up from a place that does gluten free general gau because it's so exciting to have found gau I could eat and I like there's but my mother ordered the duck which was said to be amazing but it was mostly bone and just not cooked right at all. She ate a little bit and ut was ten dollars more than what the menu said. She paid for it all... And now I can't pick up from them anymore if it's for a family thing , I had emailed hoping to smooth things over but they never replied.

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Voting closed 11

I find reviews not to be helpful these days.

There's a Chinese place I finally ordered from in Eastie. Food was delicious, fresh, and fast.

Read the Google Reviews and Yelp reviews for the place after I ordered from there a 2nd time.

Let's just say I refuse to order from them again because they were so bad. (A lot of food handling issues, hair in food, etc)

So what gives? Reviewers who have an axe to grind or real reviews of bad places.

I just find that 9 times out of 10 most of the reviews are useless and people with axes to grind against a place.. or they are overly positive reviews, which leads me to believe they were paid to review (or placed by the owners)

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Voting closed 9

I disagree and don't mind the proliferation of ghost kitchens but believe there should be more transparency around them. At the end of the day what difference does it make where the wings come from if you like them? An exception would be if they claim they are a small business or something or have resources they don't have.

I'd personally like to see these ghost kitchens go into specialty markets. I'm gluten free and trying to lose weight, I wouldn't mind if a storefront less kitchen opened up and gave me those sorts of options. I could see this benefitting small ethnic cuisines that might not be able to sustain a storefront as well. I could imagine a kitchen coop scenario where a few different types of ethnic ghost restaurants operate in the same space and share resources. Granted your complaint was just about big chains doing it but even that works ok in my book, how different is that really from Yum running KFC, Taco, Pizza Hut's or when Dunks tried to run Dunkin Baskin Robbins locations?

For me it's all about transparency. The listing should always include the address where food is being cooked and corporate ownership. We do have a right to know who is making the food and where it's coming from.

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Voting closed 12

Anywhere in NYC more or less there's a "famous ray's original pizza", a "ray's original famous pizza", and a "original Ray's famous pizza" within like 4 blocks of each other, and the sky doesn't fall.

Yet another example of Boston restaurant owners who will do anything to avoid competing on price/quality.

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You're in a maze of twisty little passages, all alike.

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twisty little pizza joints.

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There's a bazillion legal actions and lawsuits between the Rays that agreed to license together and the ones that didn't. The sky is falling there the same as it is in this case. They just don't let on to it at any of those places.

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Voting closed 20

https://gothamist.com/food/pizza-wars-the-case-of-rays-pizza-v-rays-pizza

The sky doesn't fall, but the lawsuits do get filed.

Competing on quality requires that customers can tell you apart from your competition.

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Voting closed 17

Big Daddy’s was sold. They used to have really good, huge steak subs. Last one I got back in July was pretty lean…I figured it was inflation, but now I’m hoping it isn’t a sign of things to come.

They have some of the best pizza (in the eyes of a native upstate New Yorker) in the area, hopefully nothing changes there.

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Voting closed 16

Great Italian subs, too.

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Many-times customer of Big Daddy's on Western Avenue here. (Good pizza!) I'll offer up a bullet-point number 15 not mentioned in the complaint.

I have never done business with Big Daddy's on Chestnut Hill Avenue (nor heard of them until this happened), but somehow I got an email from them on August 26, welcoming me to their loyalty program.

So perhaps the prior owner also passed along the customer database to his brother.

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Voting closed 20

But he's not the only one with a similar naming issue. Pizza places called 'Joseph's' in the greater Boston area immediately comes to mind.

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