A Michigan native who moved to Southwest Florida in his early 20’s. His first industry gig was at the South Seas Plantation, where he lived, worked and played hard. This where he met many of his dear friends and connections that he still maintains to this day. He has been in the restaurant business in the Fort Myers area for nearly 30 years and has worked with some of the best in this town, from The Bistro 41/Rumrunners founders, Jeff Gately and Todd Johnson, to the dearly departed Shannon Yates of Bacchus and Cru days.
Fast forward to his current home, with long-time friend and employer “Let’s get the Band” back together Harold Balink at Harold’s. Anyone who knows J, knows the love of his life of over 17 &1/2 years, of whom he is totally devoted, yep
Pepe Lapu Garcia Rodriguez, his Chihuahua, who he acquired with an old girlfriend. He left the girl and kept the dog, one of the best moves he’s ever made.
When not working J, Pepe Lapu and his current girlfriend/roommate Cindie Barker, love to dine out (good luck finding a good spot on a Sunday or Monday) and travel to Michigan to see his parents and family in the summer and for the holidays.
Voted the Sexiest Bartender in town a couple of years back he maintains that title to me because of his joyful personality, work ethic and genuine sense of humor.
You just enjoy yourself more when he’s around, mostly because he laughs the loudest at his own jokes! If you’ve ever sat at his bar, you know what I’m talking about and if you have not, you should!