WINK News Exclusive: Look inside the new Bruno’s of Brooklyn location

Reporter: Claire Galt Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:

A popular restaurant in downtown Fort Myers is giving WINK News an exclusive look inside its new spot.

Bruno’s shut down nine days before Hurricane Ian but then had to gut the entire place after the storm.

The owners of Bruno’s told WINK News the new location would feature all of the exact special touches customers have come to enjoy on a grander scale.

From Second to First, the Italian hotspot Bruno’s of Brooklyn, which holds first place in many hearts, will soon have an address to match. They are moving from Second Street to First Street. Cal and Genevieve Bruno explained to WINK News on Tuesday.

First St. in downtown Fort Myers where Bruno’s of Brooklyn will be. CREDIT: WINK News

The move springs from the idea that the owners were worried they wouldn’t be able to renew the lease at their current spot.

“It’s our dream. It’s a dream come true. We moved here with not much, just a dream. And here we are. And we’re really happy to be here with our patrons and friends alike,” Brunos said while tearing up.

It’s all part of the plan to expand Bruno’s. First, the Fort Myers board of adjusters gave Bruno’s the green light to open a food truck park off of McGregor Boulevard, near city walk, and then this brick-and-mortar move.

“Every day that we’re given an opportunity, we look at it as a blessing. And we don’t waste it. We capitalize,” Bruno’s said.

The new location of Bruno’s of Brooklyn. CREDIT: WINK News

The power couple gave WINK News a tour of their future home, the two-story building next to Ford’s Garage.

“You’re sitting on about 4,400 square feet,” Brunos said.

Compare that to the 1,200-square-foot current location, and you can understand the upgrade.

The 100-year-old building became available, and the Brunos jumped at the opportunity. Closing the deal just nine days before the hurricane hit Southwest Florida.

Brunos said they’ll spend the next 18 months renovating and creating what is shown in the rendering, including an old bank vault serving as a wine cellar.

Rendering of Bruno’s of Brooklyn. CREDIT: Southerview Studios

“I can see myself running around with plates. Like it’s tomorrow. I can see it all right now,” Brunos said.

The plans include an open kitchen and a second floor just for dessert dining.

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