New craft brewery coming to the Amway Center

Soon, an Orlando Magic game, concert or Solar Bears game won’t be the only reason to make a trip to the Amway Center.

Tampa-area Big Storm Brewing is opening up a taproom inside the arena.

“We’re calling it a 'brew pub' that fits the business model at our other locations, a very food-forward, food-centric location with our core beer that we make primarily in Pinellas,” said L.J. Govoni, co-owner of Big Storm Brewing.

The Orlando City Council approved a 10-year lease with the brewery for the space.

The menu will consist of bar food staples with a focus on fresh seafood.

Twenty beers will be on tap, some will be brewed locally, according to officials.

“I think that having a brewery just on the other side of I-4 is another thing that will draw people through the I-4 corridor and over into Parramore and attract people to some of the other businesses that are located there,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.

Amway Center arena in Downtown Orlando. (FOX 35 Orlando)

Govoni says the location has a bright future.

“As all the progress and growth happening in that block, we’re really excited to be a part of it, roll up our garage doors, blast the music out, add to what will be a very vibrant place in Downtown Orlando,” Govoni said.

But in the midst of a pandemic, while other restaurants are closing up shop, is now really the time to open a new business?

Govoni says the build-out will hopefully buy enough time to allow the economy to recover and the COVID-19 numbers to drop.

“The timing of construction, approvals, permits, build-out... We’ll get to a point where we really might be threading the needle and if you can thread the needle, that’s an optimal position to be in,” Govoni said. “We see an opportunity and we’re going to plunge ahead. I think we’re making a very good calculated risk.”

Big Storm Brewery hopes to open its doors by the end of the year.