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Because it’s strange and beautiful and hot, people from everywhere converge on Florida and they bring their cuisine and their traditions with them. The Zest celebrates the intersection of food and communities in the Sunshine State.

Couples in the Kitchen: Stephanie Swanz and Felix 'Bubba' Flores

Stephanie Swanz is the founder of Empamamas inside Armature Works. Her fiance, Felix “Bubba” Flores, owns Wicked Oak Barbecue in Seminole Heights.

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This week, we’re continuing our Couples in the Kitchen series with a pair who both make their living in the food business. Stephanie Swanz is the founder of Empamamas inside Tampa’s Armature Works food hall. Her fiance, Felix “Bubba” Flores, is the founder of Wicked Oak Barbecue.

Dalia sat down with the power couple at their Tampa office, from which they run their culinary empire. Stephanie and Bubba recall how they met in the most Tampa way ever, and what the busy entrepreneurs and parents eat on typical weeknight.

"I host a food podcast" is a great icebreaker at parties.