Highlandtown restaurant Gnocco, known for its homemade pastas, has a new name.
The local Mediterranean restaurant renamed its establishment “Gnocchetto,” the Italian word for “small dumpling,” after it found that somehow people were getting it confused with a New York-based Italian restaurant under the same name, said Gnocchetto chef Brian Lavin.
Lavin said it started around a year ago when the Gnocco in New York, which has been in business for over a decade, had been receiving Open Table reservations for their Baltimore location, which has been in business since summer of 2016. And vice versa — customers intending to dine at Gnocco in Baltimore were booking reservations for the one in New York.
Lavin said even after changing the name to “Gnocco Baltimore” on Open Table to specify the location, customers continued getting it confused.
In the end, Lavin said he learned that the New York restaurant had a trademark for the name “Gnocco” and had gone through a tedious process to solidify it. Changing the name, Lavin said, was the right thing to do, and he seems confident in the new name “Gnoccheto,” which adheres to its Italian roots.
“Pretty much everything is going to be the same,” Lavin said. Cocktails and food items will remain the same, and there will be a larger emphasis on homemade pasta and locally sourced ingredients, including using locally milled flours from areas in Maryland.
In the meantime, a new logo and signage are in the works, which will be designed by one of Gnochetto’s servers, a Maryland Institute College of Art student, Lavin said.
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