Established in 2013, Fort Myers Brewing was the first microbrewery in Lee County and continues to lead Southwest Florida’s craft beer movement with a signature line of beers, seasonal brews and small batch specialties. Its beers and seltzers are winners of multiple prestigious awards, and are poured at 1,600 bars, restaurants and retail locations.
Tell us about your company.
When we first opened our doors in 2013, Fort Myers Brewing Company was the first craft brewery in Lee County, and we helped pave the way for the region’s booming beer scene. Our award-winning beers and seltzers have helped us grow to become one of the largest craft breweries in the state, yet at our core, our brewery is truly just a great place to have a great beer and make new friends.
Was there an ah-hah moment that led you to your entrepreneurial journey or the idea for your company?
After we moved from California to Fort Myers, Rob and I wanted to create a place to make new friends and enjoy our favorite things together – good people, good times, and good beers! We honestly didn’t know if anyone would come on opening day… Boy, were we surprised to see a line out the door!
What makes your company culture special?
Open communication, mutual respect, innovation, appreciation, and common core values.
What makes your company stand out among competitors?
Outside-the-box thinking! We are constantly diversifying our products and experiences with our customers in mind, whether it’s introducing flavorful new specialty beers, our region’s first line of locally made hard seltzers, or a new take on seltzer-based cocktails. We also encourage our entire team to express ideas and make suggestions.
There’s no handbook for being a CEO/business owner. What kind of resources or support have you leveraged to help overcome hurdles?
It’s been wonderful to reach out to mentors for guidance, but making ‘errors’ along the way has also contributed to our success. We just kept going and tried not to get discouraged.
What goals do you have for your company for the next 5 years? How do you hope to see it grow?
Our goal is to be even more strategic and professionalized than we have been in the last 10 years. We’re committed to being a top place where the community wants to be and where people want to work.
Do you have a proudest moment so far?
We host several major beer festivals throughout the year that draw thousands to our taproom. At each event, we take a few minutes to soak it all in – surrounded by our FMBrew team and new and old friends – we never could have imagined our small brewery would be where it is today!
What does it mean to be selected as a GrowFL FLCTW Honoree?
We feel incredibly privileged to be recognized among so many fellow businesses that are making a difference across Florida. This honor is a true testament to our team’s hard work, innovation, and dedication to our craft.
Is there anyone you’d like to thank for getting you to where you are now?
Our brewery is a product of our passion for business, brewing, and people, and the unwavering support of the Southwest Florida community has made it possible to do what we love every day. We’re thankful to our loyal customers, hardworking staff, and dedicated community leaders for championing our continued growth and success.
What is your advice for aspiring or fellow business owners?
If you do something well that people need, whether it’s bringing a new product into the world or starting your own company, it doesn’t have to be something that nobody has ever seen before. There are great, great opportunities if you’re passionate about what you’re doing and you care about people.