Rock Bottom prevails in fight with its downtown landlord

Rock Bottom BreweryA U.S. District Judge has sided with downtown's Rock Bottom Brewery in a dispute with the restaurant's landlord. John Goodman, who owns the building at 10 W. Washington St. where Rock Bottom has operated since June 1996, tried to evict the business late last year. His explanation: A lease renewal notice from Rock Bottom's parent company was invalid because it didn’t come from the entity named in the lease, Walnut Brewery Inc., and wasn’t delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. Rock Bottom, part of a Colorado-based chain, argued the renewal notice was valid since it arrived on time, via overnight delivery from UPS. Goodman filed suit in Marion Superior Court, but the case was moved to the U.S. District Court Southern District of Indiana. Judge Tanya Walton Pratt sided with Rock Bottom in a ruling Monday. "The notice sent by third party courier UPS, "signature required," was sufficient as the notice was timely received by landlord and tenant clearly and unequivocally expressed the intent to exercise its option," she wrote. The original lease for Rock Bottom, which occupies more than 10,000 square feet, expired May 31, 2011. The restaurant had the option of extending the lease for two additional, five-year terms.

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