Update: Tea Trademarks in Taiwan


I recently posted about a trademark lawsuit in Taiwan, involving Uni-President Enterprises Corporation’s tea brand 「茶裏王」 and 「阿里王 Ali One」. I pointed out in the post the difference in the second characters of each brand name. However, I recently checked the trademark database in Taiwan and found that Uni-President has registered both 「茶裏王」 and 「茶里王」 as can be seen below:


You’ll notice, amusingly enough, that the character 「裏」 doesn’t even show up on the Taiwan Intellectual Property Office trademark search website – and is displayed as just a blank box. The missing character is pictured in the image, however.


This makes the judgement I previously mentioned a little more understandable, given that two out of the three characters are the same (even if they have different meanings). You’ll also notice that the product ranges to which the second trademark is applied is broader than the first.

Here’s the registration for 「阿里王」:


Interestingly, the English translation for 「茶裏王」, “King of Teas”, doesn’t seem to be a registered trademark. So many companies and brands adopting similar English names is allowed, like the one at the head of this article (King Tea).

啜飲室 ─ 啤酒也可以品!



台灣東區到處都是Lounge Bar或個性咖啡店,雖然各有所長,但是能喝到的生啤酒也是大同小異,就是台灣啤酒或進口的豪格登、健力士黑啤酒等等。因此一位外國朋友帶我去一家只有玻璃窗為店面、沒有醒目招牌的小酒吧,我沒料到有機會喝新鮮的口味。



一進去就看到有人在椅凳坐著、有些人站著喝各種顏色的啤酒,櫃台後有二十個啤酒龍頭,讓我想起西班牙的酒吧氛圍 ─ 就是一邊品好酒一邊跟朋友聊天,可惜這裡沒有西班牙式配酒的小吃。





後面的牆上還掛著一些台灣藝術家的作品,不過人實在太多了,沒辦法好好地去賞畫。讓我意外的是吧台上方有二十多種手工啤酒(craft beer)可選。



畢竟啤酒單是在黑板上寫的,你應該可以猜到販賣的啤酒是會換來換去的。我是看到啤酒單才知道這間酒吧的名稱也指明它的使命 ─ 啜飲室 ─ 提供一個空間讓在台灣的啤酒愛好者可以嘗試國內外的手工啤酒。



「啜飲」所暗示的小口小口地喝也反映這空間是給人品酒的 ─ 就是跟西班牙和法國的喝酒方式相同,要慢慢欣賞酒的品味。上面印有「台虎精釀」徽章的杯子因此比一般啤酒杯小。


看了那麼多陌生的啤酒品牌我沒想太多就點了那天晚上黑板上的第一號,也就是「五十五街精釀啤酒桂圓琥珀愛爾」(55th Street Amber)。味道比較淡(5.7%;NT$200/杯),我也很推薦給不習慣喝苦的朋友們。我一個朋友則點了比較濃的第十一號(10%;NT$300/杯)─ 「Ballast Point勝利海戰咖啡和香草波特黑啤酒」(Victory at Sea Imperial Porter with Coffee and Vanilla)。它味道應該是我們點的最苦的,略可品到咖啡味。第三個朋友點的是「惡魔之石垂涎印度淡愛爾印度淡色艾爾」(Stone Delicious India Pale Ale; 7.1%;NT$200/杯)。雖然沒有波特黑啤酒那麼苦,但是還是超過我喜歡的範圍。





Ballast Point和Stone Brewing則皆為1996年在美國聖地牙哥的啤酒釀製廠。



啜飲室 from Hallie Haller on Vimeo.




Ballast Point:http://www.ballastpoint.com/
Stone Delicious:http://www.stonebrewing.com/

提醒您:飲酒過量有礙健康 酒後不開車

Tea Trademarks and Chinese Variants: King of Teas/Ali One Tea Dispute 茶裏王/阿里王商標大戰

13730546_10102616344538349_1668283995_oI thought that the recent trademark dispute between Taiwanese tea brands 「茶裏王」 (King of Tea) and 「阿里王 Ali One」 that resolved in favour of the former was interesting because two characters 「里」 and 「裏」 have been seen by the Taiwan Intellectual Property Court as the same character.

「茶裏王」 was launched in the early 2000s by Tainan-based international food conglomerate Uni-President Enterprises Corporation, while 「阿里王 Ali One」 was launched in 2014 by a woman called Huang Yi-zhen (黃逸蓁).

The name 「茶裏王」 translates to “King of Teas” because the 「裏」, a common variant of the character 「裡」, means “among” or “in”  – so it’s literal meaning is “among teas a king”. 「阿里王」 however, just uses 「里」 as a phonetic particle as part of 「阿里」which alludes to 「阿里山」 (Alishan National Scenic Area) – which itself is a transliteration of the Tsou (鄒) aboriginal name for the area “Jarissang”. In fact, although 「里」 means “in” in simplified Chinese, in which it is used in place of 「裡」 and 「裏」, in traditional Chinese, it is only used as a unit of measurement (approx 500m) and for an administrative unit under township (neighborhood/village). Each district in Taipei has an individual li, as shown in the street sign below:


While the 「王」 in 「茶裏王」 means “King”, the 「王」 in 「阿里王 Ali One」 appears primarily to be a transliteration of the English word “one”, hence the product’s English name. A similar example is the 「旺」 in 「旺旺集團」, which is anglicized using the English word “want”, to give you the Want Want Holdings Group – the company at the center of the media monopoly protests in Taiwan and my former employer. However, there’s also a sense that the 「阿里王 Ali One」 trademark is also playing off the use of the word 「王」 as both a transliteration and for its literal meaning as “king”, i.e. King of Ali (referencing Alishan, an important tea-growing area in Taiwan). So the case for the third character is not as strong as that for the second, in my unqualified view.

Thus, the Intellectual Property Court finding as quoted by this report on the trademark case would seem to be incorrect:

智財法院認為,「茶裏王」、「阿里王Ali ONE」商標都是用於茶葉商品,第二個字皆有「里」字,第三個字皆為「王」字,對消費者而言近似程度高,加上「茶裏王」商標使用久、知名度高,因此應給「茶裏王」較大的保護,今判統一勝訴,智財局須撤銷「阿里王Ali ONE」商標註冊,全案仍可上訴。

The Intellectual Property Court found that the trademarks “茶裏王” (King of Tea) and “阿里王 Ali One” are both used to market tea products, and that the second character in each is “里” while the  third characters in each are both “王” (King), so they are very similar for consumers. In addition because the “茶裏王” trademark has been in use for a long time and is very well-known. because of this, “茶裏王” should have greater protection, so Uni-President Enterprises Corporation won the case today, and the Taiwan Intellectual Property Bureau rescinds the trademark granted for “阿里王Ali One”, although the case is still subject to appeal.

The 「茶裏王」 bottles have recently been featuring thought-for-the-day style “profundities” (note the use of speech marks) such as the one below, which I thought was particularly apt to go with this post:


Photocopy machines are used to remind you

That if you only copy

You’ll stay in the corner forever

Have you done something innovative today?



Taiwanese phrase: Pretence of diffidence when you really can’t help yourself -「愛甲給細二」/「愛食假細膩」 ài chia̍h ké sè-jī

I was talking to my friend when he started talking about the vibe in Taipei bars, in the sense that people always complain about them every week, but still end up there anyway, due to fear of missing out. He said the following:
每周都出現在同樣夜店的人 嘴中總是掛著"I hate this place" “so boring here”但還是每周都出現,「愛甲給細二」。
(The people who turn up at the nightclubs every week are always saying “I hate this place” and “It’s so boring here”, but every week they turn up, they pretend diffidence, but they love it really despite themselves.)
The Taiwanese phrase he uses 「愛甲給細二」 is likely 「愛食假細膩」 ài chia̍h  sè-jī. This is equivalent 「貪吃假裝客氣」 in Mandarin, so “people who love to eat, pretending to be polite about it”.
There is also an alternate phrase with the same meaning in Taiwanese, which is pointed out at the Taiwan Language blog:
「iau(夭)鬼假細膩」  iau-kúi  sè-lī  which translates as “a glutton pretending to be polite”.
 Photo from Greed (1924) – Public Domain

MRT Poetry: ‘Mental Image’ by Yan Ai-lin 捷運詩句:顏艾琳的「意想圖」

There’s still plenty of nice poetry to be found on the MRT when you’re out and about in the city.



Mental Image


An unaffected taciturn monk stands solemnly on the corner


With both hands outstretched


His ten fingers forming an alms bowl


Shaping the casual kindness of passersby

Yan Ailin was born in 1968 in Tainan. She graduated in history from Fu Jen Catholic University. She is a poet, a lecturer and an author.

N.B.  Variants of 「缽」 featured in a previous post.