Hauser recently launched the coffee brand out of San Angelo, Texas called Free Rein, which was founded around the work ethic, morals, and toughness of cowboy life.
“I’ve grown up around cowboys my whole life. And I can tell you, there’s nobody on earth who works harder. I’m proud to announce that I’ve decided to start a coffee company inspired by these men and women who wake up before the dawn. Not because it’s easy, but because it’s hard.
Free Rein is for anyone who gets up and works like a cowboy, gets up and chases a dream, or gets up and just feels like having a damn good cup of coffee. So get up and get after it. Dreams don’t work unless you do.”
On the other side, Bosque Ranch is a 600-acre ranch located in Fort Worth, Texas, where Sheridan keeps his own personal horses. Some episodes of Yellowstone and 1883 were filmed on the ranch as well.
Just before Cole made his Free Rein announcement, Bosque Ranch partnered with Community Coffee to release their own Bosque Ranch Craft Coffee. The lawsuit arose after Bosque Ranch claimed that Free Rein’s logo looked very similar to their own logo, and they called in the lawyers to get Hauser and the company to change it.
According to the complaint obtained by Whiskey Riff,the suit noted:
“Neither Hauser nor the Defendants asked or received permission or authorization of Sheridan or Bosque Ranch to use a mark confusingly similar to the BR Brand for virtually identical goods.”
“A little over three months after Sheridan announced Bosque Ranch Craft Coffee, another Yellowstone star, Cole Hauser, launched Defendant Free Rein and began selling ‘Free Rein’ coffee, ‘Born from the cowboy tradition.’
Like the ubiquitous Bosque Ranch trademark, Defendant Free Rein created a branding mark with two overlapping letters – this time F and R.”
The ranch was seeking permanent injunctive relief, damages, and profits from the defendants under the Lanham Act and Texas Law.
However, the case is just about to come to a close.
Whiskey Riff recently obtained a copy of dismissal notice, filed on December 15th, and it appears as though Sheridan and company have now decided to voluntarily dismiss the suit “with prejudice.” A judge has yet to stamp the case closed, but the dispute has most likely been settled.
Perhaps they reached an agreement to stop using the symbol or maybe they were allowed to use the rest of their inventory before pivoting to a new logo, but the two parties most likely came to some kind of resolution.
Maybe Sheridan decided to drop the case all together and didn’t even know about it (we all saw Luke Combs’ team sue a fan recently without him knowing about it).
I don’t think anybody could have foreseen the drama that the Yellowstone saga would go through in 2023. First, the show was forced to be cut short at the end of the second half of season five, much in part to the fact that Kevin Costner was exiting the show.