Monday, December 15, 2014

Paseo Returns!

Paseo is an extraordinary restaurant in Seattle; they have the best Cuban sandwiches, two locations, and a line around the block at all times. Honestly, I've waited in line for 30 minutes just to place an order and wait another 30 for my food. It's that good.

Tragedy struck when the place shut down overnight. Rumors swirled about bankruptcy, employee mistreatment, and the mysterious owner, Lorenzo Lorenzo. Yes---his first and last names are identical. No---he is not a bond villain. The place was cash-only and would shut down over the winter. The sudden permanent closure left Seattlites bereft. They actually lit candles at the restaurant in mourning.

But a holiday miracle has occurred! Lawyers are saving the day. Well, kind of. As part of the bankruptcy proceedings, the restaurant (including its recipes) were put up for auction, and one man purchased the business. Paseo returns. Hurray for bankruptcy judges.

Here's the more interesting twist: "Lorenzo filed an objection to the inclusion of the recipes in the sale of the Paseo name and assets — asserting in court documents that he was “the developer and owner of all the recipes for the marinades, salsas, mayos and beans that were used.”" In other words, he claimed copyright or trade secret rights to the very thing that makes Paseo great. But the judge ruled correctly finding copyright law does not apply to recipes and the bar for something being a trade secret is quite high. The recipes were part of the sale.

Your mouth may be watering at this point, and you are perhaps shaking your fist at me for telling you about the most extraordinary sandwich on earth that is thousands of miles from Ohio. You're in luck. When Paseo first shut down, The Seattle Times posted a recipe for the Paseo pork sandwich. If you like slow-roasted pork, garlic mayo, and caramelized onions, make this sandwich a part of your New Year's resolutions.