ESTERO — A popular area burger and beer joint plans to open a location in Miromar Outlets.
Ford’s Garage is being readied to open this fall in the former Miromar Outlets location of Tipsy Tarpon Seafood Shack, which closed April 21 after operating for only six months. Tipsy Tarpon, a casual local seafood restaurant, opened Sept. 24 across from Naples Flatbread & Wine Bar on the eastern end of the regional mall.
The Miromar Outlets location will be the third for Ford’s Garage, a neighborhood burger and beer joint. The original, which opened in February 2012, operates in Fort Myers’ historic downtown river district, less than a mile from Henry Ford’s winter residence, and a second location will open soon in Cape Coral.
The new locations are expected to have a similar vibe, look and feel of the original restaurant — designed as an old, small-town barn that has been converted into a 1920’s service station by day, moonlighting as a prohibition bar at night. The decor includes antique Fords and the staff is dressed down like auto mechanics. In addition to burgers, the menu includes a mac-and-cheese bar, greens, sides, shakes and other pub grub comfort foods.
Ford’s Garage “Assembly Line Burger Bar” allows patrons to build their own sandwiches by choosing their burger (beef, chicken, turkey, tuna or veggie), bun, grilled and garden toppings, sauces, as well as “burger bling,” such as onion rings, chili and fried eggs. Prices range from $7 for the black Angus burger to $12 for the American wagyu “Kobe” burger.
Every January, Ford's Garage plans to reveal its new Burgers of Fame recipients, many of them names of government officials in Lee County. Specialty burgers are named for Lee Sheriff Mike Scott (Black-n-Bleu burger with blue cheese and smoked bacon), Red Sox Hall of Famer Bert Blyleven (American Standard cheeseburger), auto dealer Sam Galloway (The Rooster chicken burger), and about 15 others.
Although most burgers are priced between $8.50 and $11, the Big Red burger costs a whopping $75, but it’s free if one person can eat it within two hours. Dubbed “The Billy Burger,” undoubtedly after Cape Coral car dealer Billy “Huge” Fuccillo, it features 10 pounds of black Angus beef.
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