Law and Order: Burger Scene Investigation

Photo courtesy of
‘Free Smells’
courtesy of ‘BrentOzar’

Well, if there’s one lesson we’ve learned over the past few weeks, it’s to never open a restaurant within smelling distance of a legal juggernaut. The crankypants over at Steptoe Johnson have sued Rogue States and its landlord on the grounds that the fumes coming from the Dupont burger joint’s exhaust system are making their lawyers sick. Deliciously, deliciously sick. The legal back and forth is just plain too much for my tiny brain (though Tim Carman is doing a fantastic job of laying it all out for us), but what I have learned is this: Steptoe Johnson: he-man burger haters, Rogue States: tasty, and in deep doo-doo.

But the burger legal woes don’t end there. Go Burger (formerly BLT Burger), which will open its first D.C. location this fall directly across Connecticut Ave. from Rogue States, and its parent company BLT Restaurant Group are suing their namesake and former chef Laurent Tourondel for ripping off their menu at his newly opened Sag Harbor, N.Y. joint LT Burger. No word on whether or not this will impact the opening of D.C.’s Go Burger, but if New York’s history with restaurant lawsuits tells us anything, we may be in for some trouble.

If, as Metrocurean points out, Connecticut Ave. is becoming the new “red meat row” shouldn’t everyone be a little more careful to dot their legal I’s and cross their copyright-infringement T’s? After all, D.C.’s legal contingent staked their claim on Connecticut Ave. long before the burger restaurants moved in. BGR should watch out that Snooki doesn’t come looking for some residuals.

Ashley Messick

Ashley is a born and bred Washingtonian who left for college but came running back to the District as fast as her little legs could carry her. By day she is a Capitol Hill brat, but by night she is a lean, mean, eating machine. It’s her goal in life to steal Anthony Bourdain’s job…by whatever means necessary. Contact her at Ashley (at) welovedc (dot) com or follow her on Twitter.

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