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Life & Work with Megan and Tyler Vaughan of Vaughan Cheese Counter & Bar

Today we’d like to introduce you to Megan and Tyler Vaughan.

Hi Megan and Tyler, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself
We are Megan and Tyler Vaughan, and we are the owners and founders of Vaughan Cheese Counter & Bar in North Beach, Maryland. We met at the Culinary Institute of America where we fell in love with the hospitality industry, service, and each other.

While there, Megan discovered her passion for artisan cheese which she carried into her ten-year career at Eleven Madison Park in New York City. Tyler traveled the world to study wine and cocktails and found his love for working with passionate people at Union Square Hospitality Group, Blue Hill, and Oceana.

In the city, we began curating focused cheese tastings for enthusiastic diners to spread the word about American artisan cheeses and the good people who make them.

We get to know the farmers we work with- their stories, their families, their animals- and we want you to meet them through their products. We founded Vaughan Cheese in 2018 to bring those awesome products to restaurants in Washington DC and grew into Vaughan Cheese Counter & Bar in North Beach, Maryland in 2021 as an American cheese cafe and wine bar.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Every small business experiences struggle but through thorough and clear communication we’re able to mitigate conflict.

The COVID-19 pandemic changed our business completely (as it did the entire hospitality industry) and we took the opportunity to pivot the business and focus on online retail ultimately discovering a need for American artisan cheese in Maryland and opening Vaughan Cheese Counter & Bar in September of 2021

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
Vaughan Cheese Counter & Bar is a full service restaurant and cheese counter specializing in American artisan cheeses. We over a full menu showcasing cheese & charcuterie boards, sandwiches, salads, and grain bowls, and shareable dishes along with a robust selection of wines by the glass and bottle, beers, and specialty cocktails. We also distribute cheeses to restaurants in Washington DC. Why do we do what we do? We care about people- each other, our guests, our suppliers, and the community. We all take care of each other and support each other. Through this, we want people to delight in their enjoyment of food, drink, and company. We want to support small farms and the families who run them by offering their amazing craft products.

By surrounding ourselves with nice people and offering products made with care and in ways that can be sustained for generations to come, we make sure that all of our interactions are thoughtful and that the details matter. Be kind. Eat cheese.

What quality or characteristic do you feel is most important to your success?
By focusing first on each other- our staff we set ourselves up for success in that we surround ourselves with incredible people who are kind and who care. Additionally, there’s a lot of awesome cheese around the world but we choose to sell only American cheese because we believe in supporting small family farms and offering the best products.

We work directly with farmers who care immensely about their animals, the cheesemaking process, and the final product. By doing so, we source the best products possible and directly support small and local businesses and the American craftsman.

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