While Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi and Deena Cortese may have calmed down from their younger Jersey Shore days, the dynamic duo are not done getting in trouble as they’re being sued by The Meatball Shop for their meatball merchandise.
The pals referred to each other as "the meatballs" due to their small stature and Italian heritage on the reality show and decided to use the nickname to sell merchandise online, which has landed them in a legal food fight with the New York company.
TMZ reported that the lawsuit claims that Polizzi and Cortese lifted the store’s own merchandise and put it on their own site and ignored a cease and desist letter, which was sent their way.
The lawsuit reportedly reads that that the pair is even ruining the brand’s good name. The Meatball Shop is seeking an injunction to halt the sale of their merchandise and will also seek financial reimbursement.
The "meatballs" have not acknowledged the lawsuit but both posted promotions for their store on their Instagram Stories on Tuesday, December 1, before the news broke. The site is still live on hellomerch.com.
Meatball Merch sells a small range of T-shirts, hats and sweatshirts branded with phrases like "Meatball Squad" and "Team Meatball" written on them. They even released three holiday sweaters, which are available to pre-order.
Although Polizzi and Cortese only launched the new venture over the summer, the official Meatball Merch Instagram page already hit over 32,000 followers, with thousands of fans eyeballing the products.
"I love these," one fan commented on a photo of a T-shirt. "So cute!! I need one," another said.
Polizzi and Cortese even met The Meatball Shop co-owners — Daniel Holzman and Michael Chernow — in 2017 when they did a meatball-making photoshoot together. However, with legal action against them, it’s fair to assume that Holzman and Chernow will not let the copyright infringement slide for membership into the "meatball squad."
Polizzi and Cortese shot to fame on the first season of Jersey Shore in 2009 and returned to the franchise in 2018 for Jersey Shore: Family Vacation, but Polizzi recently left the show. The Meatball Shop first opened its doors in 2010 on the Lower East Side, and the branch has since expanded to four NYC locations.