A leading official at the European Court of Justice has requested that a long-running case over the EU registration of a 'lemoncello' lemon peel liquor trademark should be returned to the ECJ's Court of First Instance.

The court had already overturned a decision from the EU trademark regulator the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs).

The regulator had refused to allow the registration of Italy's Shaker di L. Laudato & Cs' visual lemoncello trademark based on the names 'Limoncello della Costiera Amalfitana' and 'Shaker', alongside a round dish decorated with lemons. The move had been opposed by Spain's Limiñana y Botella, which alleged potential confusion with its Limonchelo mark.

ECJ advocate general Juliane Kokott has advised that the case be heard again, so the parties can better explain their positions. The ECJ usually approves its advocate general rulings.