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News / Business / Clark County Business

Washougal couple pour family values into new taphouse, food truck business

Ashwood Taps and Trucks to open in August

By Rachel Pinsky, for The Columbian
Published: July 6, 2022, 6:05am
4 Photos
After three years of planning and construction, Ashwood Taps and Trucks is anticipating an early August opening. Owners Tyler and Megan Davis with their children McCall, 4, and Rhettic, 3, and their dog show off the nearly completed project.
After three years of planning and construction, Ashwood Taps and Trucks is anticipating an early August opening. Owners Tyler and Megan Davis with their children McCall, 4, and Rhettic, 3, and their dog show off the nearly completed project. (James Rexroad for The Columbian) Photo Gallery

WASHOUGAL — Megan and Tyler Davis bought the land for their food truck and taphouse business three years ago, but permitting and building a project that hasn’t been done before in Washougal, as well as supply chain issues, prolonged the opening of their dream project.

Finally, Ashwood Taps and Trucks will open in early August at 1535 E St. Hours of operation will be 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

The entrepreneurial spirit of their fathers inspired the couple. They wanted to pay tribute by giving their business a name that honored them. Both dads left their jobs to pursue their own businesses in their 30s. Tyler’s dad was a teacher who opened his own company, Ashwood Construction. Megan’s was a furniture- and cabinetmaker who became a full-time segmented wood-turning artist.

The seed for Ashwood Taps and Trucks was planted on a visit to Bend, Ore., where the Davises spoke to an entrepreneur about a similar business she had started with her husband. When the Davises got home to Washougal, they envisioned what their own taphouse and food cart pod could look like and began looking for space.

Realizing the dream has taken a lot of effort. “Obtaining the materials you need is out of control,” said Megan Davis. She gave the example of a garage door that can be opened in nice weather. When they tried to order one, its cost had increased fourfold and it wouldn’t be delivered for four months. So they modified their design to use more affordable and easily obtainable products.

That’s one of many components. “We’re trying to fire on all cylinders,” said Megan Davis. “It’s all the things we love to do and we haven’t found locally.” There will be indoor space for 88 people, and room for about 120 people outdoors. Dogs and kids are welcome. Two sets of cornhole, a sandbox, and a rock garden for kids to jump and climb will allow kids to play while their parents enjoy adult beverages.

There’s a true restaurant inside, including high-top bar seating (with plugs and Wi-Fi) and tables, a television, and indoor restrooms. The owners hired three distributors in order to get the right mix of craft beer from the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon, Montana and Idaho) for their taps as well as wine, cider, kombucha and other nonalcoholic beverages.

The food cart pod has room for four trucks. Two have signed on to the project. The couple are actively seeking two other trucks that fit their vision of a space that operates for lunch, dinner, and after dinner until 9 p.m. The current roster includes The Bowl Shebang, a grain bowl truck similar to The Whole Bowl and The Mighty Bowl, and a truck called Homeport Pizza owned by a Washougal couple, Steven Baird and Maria Hart. Homeport Pizza serves wood-fired Napoletana pizza modified to suit a Pacific Northwest palate.

After years of waiting, the couple appear poised to realize their dream. “There are no investors. We live in Washougal and raise our kids here. It’s just me and my husband and we’re doing this to support our community,” Davis said.

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