Kenneth and Melissa Hyman met in Richmond, VA in 1994, and moved to the Outer Banks in 2003 to open Native Vine. Their vision was to introduce visitors to the Outer Banks to the rapidly growing wine industry in North Carolina, AND to introduce interesting wine from around the world to anyone that would listen. The first store was located in Point Harbor, just over the Wright Memorial Bridge from the Outer Banks proper, and was just 1500 sq. ft. Their concept of service, value and educating their customers allowed the store to grow to 4500 sq ft in 2006. Trio, a retail and tasting destination, is the next step in the continued evolution of the original business concept.
In 2011, John and Jennifer Minnich partnered with Kenny and Melissa to create the new concept of “TRiO”. Having vacationed in the Outer Banks since the 1970s, John introduced Jennifer to the area shortly after they met, and they were married in Duck. After many visits, they made the Outer Banks their permanent home in 2008. Jennifer’s passion for cheese and John’s insistence (from too much time spent in bars in the US and England) that “beer must be done right” fit perfectly with Kenny and Melissa’s love of wine and everything that goes with it!
Jennifer claims her love for cheese was born while she was still in middle school. Having enjoyed a sample of a cheese she’d never heard of before at her local shopping mall, she put her twenty cents into the pay phone (remember those) and called home to ask if she could buy some. Sadly, the answer was no, but a window into the vast world of cheese had been opened. Since then, she’s enjoyed literally hundreds of cheeses from dozens of regions around the country and the world. An avid believer that real cheese is good food, she loves sharing her passion for all things cheese.
When Kenny and Melissa opened their original wine shop and predecessor to TRiO, Native Vine, they selected the Mother Vine as their logo. The Mother Vine resides on Roanoke Island, and is believed to be the oldest cultivated grapevine in North America, dating back to 1584 when some of the first settlers arrived in the New World.
When John and Jennifer partnered with Kenny and Melissa in 2011 to create TRiO, we decided to keep the Mother Vine, silhouetted by the setting sun, as the logo for our joint venture. We all felt that the vine represents the legacy of our company here on the Outer Banks. We also believe that this amazing vine, over 400 years old, symbolically captures the timeless nature of the Wine, Beer, & Cheese that we love. As trendy as they may be, or not be, throughout history, Wine, Beer, & Cheese have always been. They have been a part of almost every culture for generations and centuries and while rooted in tradition, they’re still growing. They have endured and, we believe, they always will. Timeless – just like the Mother Vine.