Milk street magazine lawsuit

Milk street magazine lawsuit DEFAULT

Christopher Kimball's Milk Street

Christopher Kimball's Milk Street logo.jpg
FounderChristopher Kimball
HeadquartersMilk Street,

Boston, Massachusetts


United States

ProductsMagazine, podcasts
ServicesCooking instruction

Christopher Kimball's Milk Street is a multimedia, instructional food preparation organization created by Christopher Kimball.[1][2] The organization comprises a magazine called Christopher Kimball's Milk Street, a cooking school, Milk Street Radio, a website for video podcasts, as well as Milk Street Live! broadcasting live events.[3]

Name and location[edit]

The organization is named after Milk Street in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. It is headquartered in the Flour and Grain Exchange Building on Milk Street, which is in the Custom House District near Boston Harborwalk.


America's Test Kitchen Lawsuit[edit]

When Kimball left America's Test Kitchen (ATK) and began Milk Street, he was sued by ATK for copying the concept and style of ATK.[4][5]

On October 31, , Boston Commons Press sued Kimball. The then-Brookline based company (now based in Boston), which owns America’s Test Kitchen (ATK) and Cook’s Country, filed a lawsuit in Suffolk Superior Court against Kimball that accuses him of "literally and conceptually ripped off America’s Test Kitchen".[6]

Boston Commons Press claims that Kimball was in breach of trust when he built his new business while still employed by ATK. They also claim that he used their company's recipes and databases to enable Milk Street to be in direct competition with ATK.[6]

Jack Bishop, the chief creative officer at ATK, stated that the Milk Street magazine was very similar to Boston Commons Press-owned Cook's Illustrated. Kimball founded that magazine and was editor until November when he left over a contract dispute.[6][1][7]

The lawsuit was settled in [8]

Milk Street Cafe Lawsuit[edit]

Kimball's Milk Street Organization was also sued by Milk Street Cafe, owned by Marc Epstein, for trademark infringement. Epstein's Milk Street Cafe, established 35 years ago, is located nearby at 50 Milk Street.[9] The lawsuit was decided in Kimball's favor.[10]


The first season will include 40 recipes.[11]

Season 1[edit]

Season 2[edit]

Season 3[edit]


Season 4[edit]

Season 5[edit]

Milk Street Radio[edit]

Milk Street also produces a weekly hourly radio program titled Milk Street Radio, distributed by the Public Radio Exchange to a number of public radio stations and networks for weekend airing, which premiered on October 20, Milk Street Radio is also distributed as a podcast.


Each issue of the magazine is 30 to 40 pages and is published 6 times each year.[13][14]

Rated "D" by the BBB[15] Milk Street Magazine has a record of auto charging credit card numbers used to make purchases for items on their webstore. The owner of Milk Street, CPK Media, is not an accredited business by the BBB. This means that their rating comes from customer reviews and was not given by the BBB.


  1. ^ ab"Q&A: Milk Street's Christopher Kimball, on a new era of home cooking".
  2. ^*Post, Becky Krystal Washington. "What's behind America's Test Kitchen's lawsuit?".
  3. ^"Christopher Kimball redefines dinner with new 'Milk Street' cookbook".
  4. ^"Christopher Kimball: Bow Ties, Recipes, and Lawsuits". 20 November
  5. ^Post, Becky Krystal Washington. "What's behind America's Test Kitchen's lawsuit?".
  6. ^ abc"America's Test Kitchen sues Christopher Kimball over celebrity chef's new venture - The Boston Globe".
  7. ^"TV chef Christopher Kimball coming to Lakewood with Milk Street Live!". 20 September
  8. ^Buell, Spencer (). "The Christopher Kimball and America's Test Kitchen Lawsuit Is Over". Boston Magazine. Retrieved
  9. ^"Milk Street Cafe Takes Issue with Chris Kimball's New Venture".
  10. ^Chesto, John (11 August ). "Chris Kimball wins 'Milk Street' trademark challenge". Boston Globe.
  11. ^"- IPTV".
  12. ^Robinson, Jennifer. "CHRISTOPHER KIMBALL'S MILK STREET TELEVISION: Season 1".
  13. ^"Need Some Kitchen Inspiration This Fall?". 8 September
  14. ^"Christopher Kimball's Milk Street: The New Home Cooking - The City Cook, Inc".
  15. ^

External links[edit]


Christopher Kimball and America’s Test Kitchen Settle Lawsuit

Both sides agreed to move on years after Mr. Kimball started Milk Street, a similar cooking and media venture.

Christopher Kimball

The long legal battle between America’s Test Kitchen and Christopher Kimball, the company’s founder who left and started a similar cooking and media enterprise called Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street, is over.

Both sides have resolved their differences, which came to a head in October when America’s Test Kitchen sued Mr. Kimball and three of his closest associates. The suit accused them of creating a new venture that “literally and conceptually ripped off” America’s Test Kitchen, the Boston-based television, radio and publishing empire that Mr. Kimball helped create, in order to start a competitor. Milk Street, which debuted its magazine in , also produces cooking instruction, cookbooks and other media, including a radio show hosted by Mr. Kimball.

“Mr. Kimball will return his ATK shares to the company for an undisclosed price,” both sides said in a joint statement released Thursday. “In addition, the parties have agreed to business terms that will allow America’s Test Kitchen and Mr. Kimball’s company, Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street, to coexist in the marketplace.”

The parties had been set to meet in Suffolk County Superior Court in Massachusetts in October.

“America’s Test Kitchen and Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street agree that an amicable separation is in the best interest of their respective companies,” the statement said.

America’s Test Kitchen had contended that Mr. Kimball and his team, while still working there, essentially ripped off its business model and started developing Milk Street. At the time, Mr. Kimball was facing pressure to step back from his perch at the top of the company he started in

Mr. Kimball maintained that he was getting sidelined by new management put in place by the board of Boston Common Press, which owns America’s Test Kitchen, and that he had every right to create a new venture based on the same creative and business skills he used to build up America’s Test Kitchen.

The lawsuit, much of it based on a forensic search of emails, alleged Mr. Kimball stole customer lists and engaged in deceptive practices as he built his new business, and that as a limited partner in America’s Test Kitchen had breached his fiduciary duty.

“Chris could have built Milk Street without misappropriating ATK assets or undermining key ATK relationships,” Jack Bishop, the chief creative officer at America’s Test Kitchen, said in a interview with The Times after the suit was filed. Mr. Bishop and America’s Test Kitchen declined to comment on Thursday beyond the statement.

Mr. Kimball hired Mr. Bishop in the s as an editor for Cook’s Magazine. In the s, it became Cook’s Illustrated, which ushered in a new model of cooking journalism that was rigorous and an early adopter of an ad-free subscription model. The two men worked together over decades to grow a media empire that would come to include the America’s Test Kitchen television franchise, which began in

Mr. Kimball called the lawsuit “absurd” when it was filed, and said that it defamed him and was intended to shore up the America’s Test Kitchen brand.

Milk Street was considered a gamble even by Mr. Kimball, who wanted to move home cooking past what he called its “Fannie Farmer era” — albeit one that he helped sustain with his New England sensibility and focus on oatmeal cookies, pot roast and other mainstream American foods — into a more global approach to cooking.

Milk Street now has about 45 employees and a popular cooking school at its Boston headquarters, and in October will publish “The New Rules,” its fifth cookbook.

In an interview Thursday, Mr. Kimball said it became clear that everyone involved wanted to avoid the expense and emotional toll of a trial.

“Both sides realize it’s probably just better to move on,” he said.

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The Christopher Kimball and America&#;s Test Kitchen Lawsuit Is Over

The home-cooking mogul and the recipe empire he founded have agreed to a settlement.

Devoted foodies and restaurant newbies love The Feed. Sign-up now for our twice weekly newsletter.

Photo provided

Christopher Kimball / Photo provided

A clash between a Boston-based cooking empire and the man who created it has come to an end. America’s Test Kitchen, home to several popular cooking shows and magazines, has reached a settlement with Christopher Kimball, the man who founded and then left the company to start his own food-media enterprise across town.

In a joint statement released Thursday, each party said that Kimball has agreed to sell his ATK shares for an undisclosed amount. The settlement includes terms that will let both companies “co-exist in the marketplace,” the statement reads, adding, “America’s Test Kitchen and Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street agree that an amicable separation is in the best interest of their respective companies.”

ATK also said in a follow-up statement that it “is thrilled with the settlement,” adding, “Recouping Mr. Kimball’s shares in ATK was very important for the growth and future of the company.”

The two sides have been locked in a legal battle for nearly three years and had been slated to face off in court in October. The dispute came in the fallout after Kimball left the then-Brookline-based company that produces ATK, Cook’s Illustrated and Cook’s Country content to form Milk Street, a new company based in downtown Boston with offerings that include a TV show and magazine, as well as a cooking school, cookbooks, and a podcast. At the time, ATK fumed that Kimball had gone behind its back and was now competing directly with it, despite promising not to do so, and alleged that he used company resources to plot his new venture. ATKhad sought compensation from Kimball, and said it wanted the mogul to agree to make changes to his business model.

In response, Kimball in late  filed a countersuit in which he claimed that ATK’s lawsuit cost his company “millions of dollars in possible investments” and alleged that ATK’s media campaign surrounding the dispute, including a website it launched called, was defamatory.

ATKis now based out of the Boston Design Center in the Seaport, and its TV and radio shows have remained on the air despite losing its bowtie-wearing figurehead. America’s Test Kitchen will premier its 20th season on PBS in January.

In , Kimball prevailed over the nearby Milk Street Cafe, which had sued him for trademark infringement.

'Milk Street Television' Enters A Third Season

Here comes a juicy, yet not-at-all-unexpected lawsuit: America’s Test Kitchen, the force behind the TV series of the same name as well as Cook’s Illustrated magazine and a number of other publications, is suing its bowtie-clad co-founder, Christopher Kimball, according to the Boston Globe.

The issue at hand: Kimball’s recently launched venture, Milk Street, which ATK claims is “literally and conceptually”a ripoff of his former company.

Kimball stepped down from his post at ATK in November after failed contract negotiations. Backed by millions of dollars from investors, he went on to launch Milk Street (originally called Milk Street Kitchen), a multimedia company involving a print magazine as well as a website, a cooking school, TV and radio shows, cookbooks, a live touring show, and more.

Naturally, this didn’t sit well with ATK: As the Globe reports, the lawsuit claims Kimball “breached his trust with his former employer by building a new venture while still on the ATK payroll and using the company’s databases and recipes to position the ventureso it would directly compete with America’s Test Kitchen.” It’s seeking financial compensation and also asking that Milk Street change the way it does business.

Christopher Kimball and America’s Test Kitchen did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The new lawsuit from ATK isn’t the only litigation Kimball’s facing over Milk Street: Back in July, the owner of a longstanding Boston restaurant called Milk Street Cafe filed suit against Kimball after asking him to change the name to no avail. Restaurant owner Marc Epstein said the similar name created confusion, with people coming to apply for jobs at the restaurant thinking it was the new Kimball venture.

• America’s Test Kitchen Sues Former Star Christopher Kimball [Boston Globe]
• Milk Street Cafe Takes Issue With Chris Kimball’s New Venture [Eater Boston]
• Christopher Kimball’s Next Move IsAnother Test Kitchen [E]


Lawsuit magazine milk street

Christopher Kimball

Not to be confused with Chris Kimball.

Christopher Kimball (born June 5, ) is an American chef, editor, publisher, and radio and TV personality.

Early life and education[edit]

Kimball was born and raised in Westchester County, New York, the son of Mary Alice White and Edward Norris Kimball.[6] The family had a cabin in southwestern Vermont.[1]

He graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy and then Columbia University () with a degree in Primitive Art.[1][2]


Early career[edit]

After graduating from Columbia, Kimball worked with his stepbrother in a publishing company. Soon after, he worked for The Center for Direct Marketing in Westport, Connecticut and also started taking cooking courses.[1] After securing $, in angel investments from friends and family, he started Cook’s Magazine from a tiny office in Weston, Connecticut in when he was 29 years old.[1] He sold the magazine to the Bonnier Group in and moved on to other publishing ventures.[1]

America's Test Kitchen[edit]

Kimball was a co-founder, as well as editor and publisher of America's Test Kitchen, which produces television and radio shows, and publishes magazines, including Cook's Illustrated,[6] which Kimball launched in It also publishes Cook's Country magazine, which was launched in [1] The company's revenue comes from its readers, rather than advertisers, which differentiates them from the competitors.[1]

Its cookbook publisher division is Two Pigs Farm. Boston Common Press, a private partnership between Kimball, Eliot Wadsworth II, and George P. Denny III, owned Kimball's publishing activities.[1] Kimball also hosted the syndicated public television cooking shows America's Test Kitchen and Cook's Country from America's Test Kitchen.

On November 16, , a news release from Boston Common Press, parent company of Cooks Country/Cooks Illustrated/America's Test Kitchen, announced Kimball's departure. The TV programs had already been filmed and Kimball appeared as host, but his direct participation in the company ended immediately.[7] He remained a minority stockholder until when he sold his shares back to the company as part of a lawsuit settlement.[8]

Christopher Kimball's Milk Street[edit]

Main article: Christopher Kimball's Milk Street

In , he created Christopher Kimball's Milk Street, located on Milk Street in Boston, Massachusetts.[9]

On October 31, , Boston Common Press (the parent company of America's Test Kitchen and Cook's Illustrated) filed a lawsuit against Kimball in Suffolk Superior Court, claiming that Kimball "literally and conceptually ripped off" his former employer.[10] In the lawsuit, Boston Common Press claims Kimball built his new venture while still on their payroll, using company resources in the form of recipes and databases to help shape Milk Street Kitchen into a direct competitor.[11][12] The lawsuit was settled in August [8]

He was further sued by his ex-wife Adrienne who alleged his departure from Cook's Illustrated devalued the company and affected his payments to her.[13]


He is the author of The Cook's Bible, The Yellow Farmhouse Cookbook, Dear Charlie, The Dessert Bible and Fannie's Last Supper, and is a columnist for the New York Daily News and the Boston-based Tab Communications.

Other television appearances include This Old House and the morning shows Weekend Today and The Early Show.

He has been a regular contributor on National Public Radio. On January 8, , Kimball began hosting WGBH-FM's America's Test Kitchen Radio distributed by PRX. In , when he left the America's Test Kitchen TV shows, his association with the radio program also ended. He began hosting a new weekly radio cooking show in , Milk Street Radio, also heard on WGBH-FM in Boston, airing Sundays at 3 p.m., and syndicated to other US public radio stations.

Personal life[edit]

He has been married three times. He had a son and three daughters with his second wife, Adrienne. They divorced in December [3][4][5]

On June 30, , Kimball married Melissa Lee Baldino, executive producer of the America's Test Kitchen television show.[6] She is now co-founder of Christopher Kimball's Milk Street.[14] Their son, Oliver Kimball, was born on May 4, A daughter, Rike, was born in


  1. ^ abcdefghijFrieswick, Kris, "Perfection, Inc.", The Boston Globe, August 2, (PDF version)
  2. ^ abLui, Claire, "Cooking Chris Kimball ’73 brings recipes that work from America’s Test Kitchen to your kitchen", Columbia College Today, July/August
  3. ^ ab"Country Style - Boston Magazine". Boston Magazine. 15 May
  4. ^ ab"A Down-Home Thanksgiving on the Kimball Farm". NPR.
  5. ^ ab"Thanksgiving Answers From Chris Kimball". WBUR.
  6. ^ abcLaskey, Margaux, "Melissa Baldino, Christopher Kimball: All the Ingredients Were There", The New York Times, June 30,
  7. ^"Christopher Kimball to Leave America's Test Kitchen". November 16, Retrieved
  8. ^ abBuell, Spencer (). "The Christopher Kimball and America's Test Kitchen Lawsuit Is Over". Boston Magazine. Retrieved
  9. ^Healy, Beth; Nanos, Janelle (May 31, ). "Chris Kimball to launch Milk Street Kitchen cooking venture". The Boston Globe.
  10. ^Chesto, Jon (October 31, ). "America's Test Kitchen sues Christopher Kimball over celebrity chef's new venture". The Boston Globe. Retrieved &#; via
  11. ^Krystal, Becky (). "Six take-aways from America's Test Kitchen's lawsuit against Christopher Kimball". Washington Post. ISSN&#; Retrieved
  12. ^Severson, Kim (). "Food Fight Heats Up as America's Test Kitchen Sues a Founder". The New York Times. ISSN&#; Retrieved
  13. ^Shanahan, Mark (19 January ). "Chris Kimball sued by ex-wife after his exit from America's Test Kitchen". The Boston Globe. Retrieved
  14. ^"A day in the life of Christopher Kimball's Milk Street - The Boston Globe". Retrieved


Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

How to Make Garlic Confit - Milk Street at Home

We’re All Better Off For Chris Kimball Leaving America’s Test Kitchen

It’s not often that a messy public divorce, of sorts, leaves nearly everyone — or at least those of us who weren’t part of the relationship—better off for the split. Of course, I’m not talking about a real marriage or family, but of a corporate relationship.

To be clear, I&#;m not criticizing Chris Kimball or America&#;s Test Kitchen or Milk Street Kitchen. We&#;re all better off because we now have two great cooking empires, where we used to have one.

In , Chris Kimball left or was forced out of the America’s Test Kitchen empire he had founded several decades before. In case you don’t know, ATK includes an eponymous PBS TV show and a second show called Cook’s Country, a magazine of the same name and its more famous, older sibling Cook’s Illustrated, as well as recipe and equipment review web sites, and a cookbook publishing business.

Kimball founded the company in and led it from a Brookline, Massachusetts, brownstone until he left. Right before that point, the company had brought on its first CEO as it tried to deal with the changes in the way Americans get their food journalism in the age of the internet, but at some point in Kimball was forced out of his company by co-owners who thought he was no longer the man for the job.

At the time I was very skeptical of the move. I wrote here that this was a big mistake: “Chris Kimball is the face and personality of ATK and its driving force. This is like John Scully forcing Steve Jobs out of Apple in the s. It is Kimball’s homespun, stolid Vermonter style that underpins everything they do from the magazines to the TV shows to the radio show.”

I’m happy to say I was wrong. Certainly things have worked out for Kimball, but it’s also worked out for ATK.

In , Kimball founded a new food journalism venture in Boston called Milk Street Kitchen with plans for a magazine, a cooking school, TV show, cookbooks, and all the rest. The plan was that Milk Street would shift focus. Whereas ATK’s properties were all about making the best versions of familiar and not-so-familiar dishes we could see on America’s dining room tables, Milk Street would go out into the world’s cultures to bring together techniques and ingredients and recipes in a way that could make more adventurous home cooks want to try them. It wasn’t just about lifting recipes from those cuisines, but about seeing how people think about food in different places.

Meanwhile, America’s Test Kitchen wasn’t sitting still… literally. The old, small brownstone in Brookline was cast aside in favor of a brand new huge space in Boston’s trendy, tech-centered Seaport. Also cast aside was any reticence about taking advantage of the internet to expand ATK’s reach. The web sites got vast improvements (like search finally becoming usable), their social media presence expanded (including a hugely successful Facebook group for subscribers), more personalities to become faces of the company emerged now that Kimball’s vast shadow was gone, they ditched the old Q-and-A/interview style radio show/podcast1 and created a new podcast that is very different from other food podcasts and has a huge audience.

And they’re all good. I’m constantly trying new recipes from Milk Street and my family is enjoying foods from Korea and Vietnam and Senegal and Russia and various Middle Eastern countries. But we’re also enjoying the recipes rising up from the revived ATK outlets, not to mention the videos and podcasts that have a lot more watchability and personality in a style that’s become popular on social media.

I’m sure that everyone involved in the split between ATK and Chris Kimball would rather have avoided the pain and costs associated with it, but as I look at the results more than two years on, I have to conclude that for fans of food journalism the split gave us more than twice the value we’d had before. It’s evidence of the theory of creative destruction, that sometimes a little chaos and disruption is good for the creative soul. Good for them and good for us.

Image Credit

  • px-Christopher_Kimball_fd89decff24e14b3bbbb Melissa Baldino | CC BY SA

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‘America&#;s Test Kitchen,’ Christopher Kimball resolve lawsuit

A heated dispute between producers of popular public TV cooking shows has cooled following a settlement between America&#;s Test Kitchen and its former CEO and host Christopher Kimball. 

The two sides announced an “amicable separation” and resolution to the nearly three-year lawsuit in a Thursday press release. A trial had been scheduled for October.

The release provided few details about the settlement agreement. The two sides “agreed to business terms” that allow ATK and Christopher Kimball&#;s Milk Street, Kimball’s latest production, to “coexist in the marketplace,” according to the release. 

Kimball is also returning his shares in the America’s Test Kitchen media company for an undisclosed price, according to the release. Kimball declined to comment on the agreement. 

Kimball co-founded and helped build America’s Test Kitchen into a multimedia company catering to home cooks. ATK produces two public TV cooking series (America’s Test Kitchen and Cook’s Country) and publishes its recipes in magazines and cookbooks. After a contract dispute, he left the company and launched Milk Street Kitchen, which was later retitled Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street. A year later, ATK filed a lawsuit claiming that Kimball “literally and conceptually ripped off” its content and business model. 

Kimball countersued, denying the claims against him and accusing ATK of using the lawsuit as a “nationwide media campaign” that defamed him. He pointed to ATK’s website, which is no longer active. 

Kimball told Current in that the lawsuit hadn’t distracted him from his new production. “You get through the first six months or so, then it’s just background noise,&#; he said. &#;There’s actually not much going on. So we go for a month without even thinking about it at this point.”


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