Charles Rumph and Tim Fedorko's first attempt at launching a vegan restaurant concept in Tampa "was a disaster."
They respectively spent months reflecting on the ill-fated attempt.
Rumph even considered a move to New York.
"We said let's just give it one more try," said Rumph. "We found this partnership with Duckweed Urban Market. They had a vacancy in their café space so we met with Michelle Deatherage, the owner. We had such similar values, she cared about the environment, about people and was so forthcoming and clear about everything."
So, the long-time friends who met in high school brought on plant-based baker, Michelle Stapleton and on May 8, the three partners officially opened Farmacy Vegan Kitchen + Bakery at 803 N Tampa St.
"All the food is as clean as it can be possibly be," Rumph said. "Any time you're talking about vegan cuisine, creativity is a huge piece. You have to be able to read and react and make substitutions on the fly. You have to think 'How do we fill this gap with something that is plant based?"
Though Rumph's tasted his fair share of vegan cuisine, he handles the operations and sales, leaving the cooking to Fedorko and Stapleton.
Their signature items include an avocado BLT wrap made with Tempe, which they smoke to give a similar taste profile to the real thing, and doughnuts.
"In the vegan world, you get a lot of aesthetically pleasing baked goods, but they don't always taste as good. Michelle's taste even better than they look. She uses essential oils like lavender or lemon to give a rich, aromatic experience," Rumph said.
While Rumph and Fedorko each transitioned to a vegan lifestyle two years, they did so for different reasons.
"He was starting to go more of the health side and personally, I saw a documentary that the affect of eating animals has on the environment," Rumph said. "Once you become vegan, you start caring about everything, animal welfare, your body, the environment."
To that end, they use biodegradable and recyclable containers and products.
"Our dream is to show people that sustainable, conscience business is possible," Rumph said. This is what's happening now, people care about their bodies and the environment."
For more information, visit farmacyvegankitchen.com or call (786) 214-0671.
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