If you love rum, tiki drinks, and live music but don't want to travel outside Broward County to experience all three in one spot, you're in for a surprise. Later this fall, you'll be able to find them together in a new shared venue.
Fort Lauderdale-based South Florida Distillers and Kreepy Tiki Bar & Lounge are both moving to a new, 6,000-square-foot facility located at 2608 S. Federal Highway in east Fort Lauderdale. When complete,
For the past several years, the current Kreepy Tiki Bar & Lounge has coexisted in the same 1,800-square-foot room with Kreepy Tiki Tattoo Boutique, housed in a black cinderblock building at the nexus of one-way Miami Road and South Federal Highway. Given that Kreepy Tiki is also known as a music venue, the small space was really serving three functions at once.
According to Kreepy Tiki owner
"We want to be able to have two separate spaces — one for the cocktail lovers that have come to know us as a tiki bar, and one for the live music fans," says Harrison, who will be changing the name of both the bar and venue to help give the brand its own identity apart from the tattoo shop. "This way everyone can enjoy both."
Over the past year Kreepy Tiki has become one of South Florida's best tiki bars, and what it lacks in terms of beachside location it makes up for with its own brand of tiki culture, with plenty of authentic tiki bric-a-brac, Polynesian nostalgia, and a solid tiki-themed craft cocktail program. So authentic, in fact, that Kreepy was one of three Florida bars to be listed among the 22 Best Tiki Bars in the United States according to Condé Nast Traveler.
The relocation, planned for later this summer, is a match made in heaven, says South Florida Distillers co-founder Avi Aisenberg.
"This expansion is essential to the growth of both the distillery and our Fwaygo rum brand," says Aisenberg. "In addition to a new tasting room and production space, our new location will allow us to host more events and continue to cultivate the craft spirits scene here in South Florida."
Moving forward, the distillery will be able to produce more than 550 bottles of rum a day, allowing them to transition from their current setup to new stainless steel stills including a 5,000-liter piece of equipment the duo say is currently the largest in the Florida craft distilling community.
The new location will also provide more room for the distillery's craft spirits incubator program, which currently includes small batch production for Florida Kush, a handcrafted 100 percent Blue agave spirit, and Prescribed Spirits gin, among others.
The duo says they're also looking forward to improving the tasting room to accommodate tours, tastings, light fare, and a hangout for locals and tourists. Neighboring concepts currently include LauderAle Brewing and Riverside Market South, two like-minded establishments working to transform this particular stretch of South Federal Highway into a destination for craft spirits, beers, and cocktails.
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It could also help to boost the local music scene, says Kreepy Tiki Bar & Lounge booking manger Nayra Serrano, formerly head booking manager for Churchill's Pub in Miami.
"With this move we'll have more space to host larger shows, including national and touring acts that, in the past, wouldn't have been able to play here," says Serrano. "When it comes to the music scene, Fort Lauderdale bridges the gap between West Palm Beach and Miami. Moving forward, we'll have the opportunity to build a stronger music community where [all three counties] can work as a trinity to help attract bigger, better bands to South Florida."
South Florida Distillers and Kreepy Tiki Bar & Lounge will be relocating to 2608 S. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale. Both establishments will celebrate a grand re-opening this fall. Details will be announced on the South Florida Distillers Facebook page.
Nicole Danna is a food writer covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. To get the latest in food and drink news in South Florida, follow her @SoFloNicole or find her latest food pics on the BPB New Times Food & Drink Instagram.