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Tavern on the Green Could Become a National Chain

By Serena Solomon | September 29, 2011 12:10pm
The original Tavern on the Green in Central Park.
The original Tavern on the Green in Central Park.
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DNAinfo/Leslie Albrecht

MIDTOWN — Tavern on the Green could soon be a landmark everywhere but Central Park.

The famous restaurant, which closed down on New Year's Day in 2010, could spawn a trademark name for a national chain of eateries, according to Crain’s.

Tavern International, a newly formed company, has put out $1.3 million to use the restaurant’s name outside of New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and some parts of Pennsylvania, says Crain’s. The city retains the naming rights to Central Park’s iconic Tavern on the Green after the restaurant's managers filed for bankruptcy.

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court Southern District of New York approved the licensing deal on Monday. The agreement not only restricts geographic use of the name — any merchandise must also be approved by city, which will also take a slice of any profits, Crain’s reported.

Lou Bivona is heading up Tavern International, which is already advertising opportunities to those interested in using the name "for restaurant businesses across the United States and around the world."

Bivona has been linked to the famous name for several years, selling “Tavern-branded” cooking oils and sauces via TavernDirect.com.

As for the original Tavern on the Green, the city is attempting to find a new operator with a possible announcement in the near future. Throughout the summer the Tavern’s building was a makeshift movie theatre, and the city has also attempted to breathe life into the location with gourmet food trucks stationed in the car-park.