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Our Story

TriCal  noun 

/'tri-cal/ : San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego

TriCal Wine was started by three best friends from three great cities. Bound together by surfing, the trio frequented Santa Barbara County for its amazing wine and epic surf.

With its pristine beaches and constant swells, Santa Barbara is known for its premium wine due to the stable, coastal climate. After a decade of enjoying this hidden gem, the trio founded TriCal Wine to share the beauty of this region and premium wine with the rest of the world.

Meet the Founders

Matt Minshall

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Matt is a film and television producer based in Los Angeles. As a young man growing up in Southern California, there was no better place to escape than to the isolated, rugged coastline of Santa Barbara County. As this wine region grew, so did Matt’s appreciation for the unique qualities of its grapes. So when he received a call from Kevin asking if he’d be interested in starting a winery, Matt’s immediate response was “Hell yes.”

Wesley Jones

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When he is not innovating medical devices, San Diego local Wes, seeks out adventure as an avid surfer and mountaineer. Having spent most of his professional career in San Diego and depriving himself of the much-needed time in the empty northern waters, he jumped at the opportunity to converge his passion for surfing with his love for quality wine. With ten years of experience in operations and a MBA from UCLA, he joins this old college trio on a new adventure.

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Dr. Kevin Kane

Kevin is an accomplished physician based in San Francisco. He first experienced Santa Barbara County from the perspective of a surfer under the cover of salty barrels at Rincon Point with Matt and Wes back in their college years. After a few trips together, he grew a deep appreciation for the art of winemaking. As a published researcher in biochemistry and the life sciences, Kevin leads the TriCal vision of minimal intervention winemaking. 

Meet the Makers

Norm Yost
Winemaker

With 42 years of winemaking experience, Norm has amassed a reputation as a master in the cellar. He has crafted the wine for diverse wineries in Napa Valley, Russian River in Sonoma County, Margaret River in Western Australia and Oregon’s Willamette Valley. He then went on to refine his cool weather winemaking techniques in Santa Barbara County, where he has spent over half of his career. Norm’s vast experience and dedication to minimal intervention have contributed to the wild success of his personal labels Flying Goat Cellars and Goat Bubbles Sparkling Wine, which he launched in 2000. After hearing Matt, Kevin, and Wesley’s story, he happily agreed to share his knowledge of winemaking and passion for vineyard-designated wines, making the wines produced by TriCal a truly unique and remarkable expression of Santa Barbara wine.

Andre Baltazar
Cellar Master

An innovative Cellar Master and a winemaking protégé of Norm’s, André takes great pride in the quality of his craft. Originally recruited into the wine industry for his people skills in the tasting room, André quickly fell in love with the artistry, science, and intense commitment of crafting wine. With 10 years in the wine industry, he continues his pursuit of knowledge and eagerly participates in wine blending and other production decisions. When not running the cellar for TriCal and Flying Goat, Andre spends his free time working on his personal label Baltazar Family Wines which allows him to hone his skills as a winemaker and express himself creatively in the cellar.

Rick Pratt
The Godfather

We refer to Rick as the Godfather of TriCal Wine. Rick is a true lover of the art of winemaking and committed to making wines of the highest quality. He has spent decades forging relationships with Santa Barbara’s premier vineyards to obtain grapes that are otherwise untouchable. He is even known to pour out barrels of wine that aren’t up to his standards. Rick’s interest in winemaking began in the 70's and started in his own garage. Before going commercial, he shared his precious garage wine with friends and co-workers, creating a dedicated following and a strong local reputation. One of these co-workers was our very own, Matt Minshall. Matt was astonished to find that this artisan wine he received from Rick turned out to be one of the best bottles of wine he had ever experienced. When it was time for the three California kids to fulfill their dream of combining surf culture with wine culture, Rick was the first person to get a call.

The Team at Work

HANDCRAFTED
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