Get To Know The Owners Behind Rank And File In Flagler Village
Photography by Austen Amacker
When hospitality brothers Mark and Stefano Barbagallo decided to open Rank & File Social Club, a neighborhood-inspired bar in Fort Lauderdale’s Flagler Village, they wanted it to feel like it was built by the locals.
“We wanted to create a sense of nostalgia, warmth and comfort for every guest that walks in the door,” Mark says. “Almost as if everyone came and dropped something off.”
Inside the 3,000-square-foot retro-luxe inspired venue is a 1969 Honda motorcycle, various pieces of vintage furniture, an entire wall of books and an upright piano. “We were looking to tie-in some local history to the space, so we used the Fort Lauderdale historical archives to find some classic photos of different areas and places around Broward, and we had them printed, framed and hung around the venue in vintage frames,” adds Stefano.
The brothers, who have both worked in different facets of the hospitality industry for a combined 45 years––Mark, who largely focused on private events and nightlife, and Stefano, who opened dozens of restaurants up and down the East Coast for Cheesecake Factory as well as Barteca Restaurant Group––believe with Rank & File they can offer something to the Fort Lauderdale community that’s never been done before.
“Broward County is exploding right now,” Mark says. “Downtown Fort Lauderdale is seeing a resurgence and is expanding northward into Flagler Village, where the art scene is really getting a huge focus, and that’s what attracted us to the area.”
If you’re wondering what to expect during a visit to Rank & Social, the brothers say the bar allows guests to create their own experience. Grab drinks at the 75-foot U-shaped bar, hang outside on the spacious patio, or relax in the lounge seating area. Pool and darts are always free, and the entire venue is dog-friendly.
As for cocktails, all of Rank & Social’s juices are made in-house and drinks are always garnished with fresh fruit and herbs. Bestsellers include the Cucumber Emoji, with gin, lemon and watermelon and the Hand-Crafted Huckleberry, blended with blackberry puree, basil, lemon and Hennessy. Music is also a large part of the venue’s draw, with themed nights including ’70s, ’80s and ’90s covers, as well as acoustic acts.
“People call [Flagler Village] the new Wynwood, and we think that’s a good comparison,” Stefano adds. “All the new residential towers going up in the area is a very promising sign. Those residents will want things to do and places to go that
are close to home, and that’s where we come in.”