May 10, 2011 / 11:20 PM / 7 years ago

New York, Arizona eateries duel over belly-bursting bites

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A famous Manhattan deli wants the right to keep giving its patrons heart attacks: kosher ones, that is, and in the form of a sandwich.

The 2nd Ave Deli, a near 60-year mainstay of New York City, asked a federal judge on Tuesday to declare that its strictly kosher gut-busting sandwiches were not an imitation of an Arizona restaurant’s overly caloric but similarly named offerings.

In its court papers, the deli said it had been warned by the Arizona-based Heart Attack Grill that it should stop serving its “Instant Heart Attack Sandwich” or else face potential legal action for trademark violations.

The New York eatery said the Arizona grill, which has won court victories in the past protecting its fatty creations, was also unhappy about deli’s plans to introduce a “Triple Bypass Sandwich.”

The deli said there was “no likelihood of confusion” because the two restaurants’ food “could not be more different.” It asked a judge to declare that the deli had not violated any of the Arizona restaurant’s trademarks.

“The defendant’s ‘Triple Bypass Burger’ is more precisely a cheeseburger, and as such is decidedly not kosher and unsuitable for the 2nd Ave Deli’s customer base,” the court papers added.

According to kosher dietary laws, meat and milk — precisely the makings of a cheeseburger — should not be mixed.

The hospital-themed Heart Attack Grill did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit.

The deli’s “Instant Heart Attack Sandwich” is composed of potato latkes — a traditional Jewish pancake usually served for Channukah — piled high with a choice of corned beef, pastrami, turkey or salami. It sells for $23.95.

The Arizona restaurant’s “Triple Bypass Burger” is composed of cheese slathered over three meat patties weighing 1.5 pounds and sells for $10.51.

Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Peter Bohan

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