Red, white and brew: This Fort Lauderdale brewery salutes American icons

Raise a pint for life, liberty and the pursuit of hoppiness at American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom, opening in January in Fort Lauderdale
(American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom / Courtesy)

Raise a pint for liberty at American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom, opening this winter in Fort Lauderdale.

The 4,000-square-foot, patriotic gastropub, slated to debut in January along Northeast Third Avenue in Flagler Village, will be an offshoot of American Icon’s flagship brewery in Vero Beach.

But this southern outpost won’t brew beer. The taproom’s ales and lagers will instead be kegged at the Vero Beach facility, which opened last October, and distributed to Broward County as needed, owner Michael Rechter says.

“We’re able to brew all the beer we need in Vero Beach,” says Rechter, who plans to hire a local beer distributor in the coming months. “The only thing people like more than drinking is eating, which is why the new location will also have a kitchen.”


Like the one in Vero Beach, American Icon’s Fort Lauderdale kitchen will serve a menu of pub grub, including pork pot stickers, stone-fired pizzas, beer-cheese soups, salads and “pubwiches” that range from hamburgers to short-rib sliders.

But why open a bar combining beer and patriotism, two things that are already inseparable? American Icon is more interested in saluting the U.S.’s finest pop-culture exports, Rechter says. In Fort Lauderdale, red-and-white murals of rock gods Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix are splashed across the brewery’s exterior, framed by a palm-covered patio.

Murals of Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix decorate the walls outside the new American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom.
(American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom / Courtesy)

The walls inside will eventually carry photos of Michael Jackson, Muhammad Ali, Marlon Brando and other homegrown icons, along with images toasting its Vero Beach brewery, formerly a diesel power plant built in 1926. As in Vero Beach, pints will be poured from liberty torch-shaped tap handles.


“You’ll see Jimi and Jim on the brewery’s outside, but it’s more than rock ’n’ roll indoors. Our beers will be named after famous Americans,” Rechter says.

The brewery aims to open in January in northern Flagler Village and offer 24 beer taps.
(American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom / Courtesy)

The starting lineup of seven core beers include the Icon India Pale Ale, a 1926 Hefeweizen and Freedom Torch Milk Stout. American Icon’s 24 taps will no doubt feature seasonal releases such as Big Daddy Voodoo brown ale and Hotshot Lincoln, a bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout, says Robert Sweers, the brewery’s Vero Beach manager.

They’ll also boast a full liquor menu, a bourbon-barrels aging program and several smaller beer tanks for brewing experimental flavors, says Sweers, who will help manage the Fort Lauderdale location next year.

American Icon Brewery Kitchen and Taproom will open in January at 913 NE Fourth Ave., in Fort Lauderdale. or 954-356-4364

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