It’s often said that the best ideas come when you least expect them and change your life forever. That’s for sure what happened with Whale Tails…
It was the fall of 1989 and unusually warm, even for Southern California. Ric and Rick were looking out the windshield of a ’52 Chevy truck at the biggest south swell of the season. As the aqua lines marched in from the horizon, the two friends were laughing about how little cash they had and a few of the choices they had made since meeting up in fifth grade.
As the surf got louder and with a little over three dollars between them, they headed down to the corner store and grabbed an oversized bag of chips and a container of the brightest non-refrigerated guacamole ever made! That’s when it happened; the light went on and the idea for Whale Tails was born.
Over the years, surfing had become the catalyst for many adventures.
The original Whale Tail was an outline of Cat Paw’s tail drawn on the back of the Adopt A Whale envelope. Ric’s wife, Terry, grabbed some tortillas and cut out the shapes as the oil heated up in the skillet. She tossed them in and the three friends could not believe their eyes as Whale Tails came to life! Just like in nature, no two were alike.
The shape was perfect. We put some salsa in a bowl and gave them the true test. Thanks to nature, they were made for dipping. I wish I could say that the rest was easy, but I can tell you that really good things seem to take their own sweet time. It was important to us to build a business that was true to our original vision and reflective of our goals to get more involved in the world.
One taste of our chips and we think you’ll agree that the flavor is fantastic, the quality unsurpassed and that the shape holds promise, adventure and salsa alike!
Source: Whale Tails Chips
“Aloha Ric, Hey, thanks so much for those whale tails chips! they were fantastic at the Blue Vision Summit–my kids loved them,and so did I! I’m sorry we didn’t get to meet you there, it was a fantastic event. But then, if I lived where you live, I probably wouldn’t be very motivated to come out to cold, chilly DC, no matter how stellar the event! – Margo
“Dear Rick Grant Whale Tails Chips, Congratulations on your success with Whale Tails Chips! We had them as snacks at our 2007 Whale Quest event in Kapalua for the participating elementary and Jr. high children, and they loved them! Several of my thank you letters from the school children mentioned them, and I thought you would like to know. Best of luck and we hope to see you at Whale Quest sometime.” -Meagan
“Dear Rick and Ric Whale Tails Chips, I wanted you to know that the Whales Tails chips were a big hit at the Music Festival. We sold almost all of them, and we offered some to the artists backstage. We definitely heard good comments about them and questions about where to find them for purchase from members of the audience. Thanks so much. I will send a program to you soon. -Stephen
“Dear Ric and Rick, Your chips are very good! The “spice” is light and the salt has a nice twist to it. They are also “sturdy” chips that don’t easily break into little pieces, which is great for dipping. I’ll buy them when I see them in the store for sure, for their taste but of course also for the whale logo and your guys’ cool story about the start of the chips…I like the concept of the whale tail being like a spoon for a dip so you don’t need to double dip. I’m keeping some of the chips to dole out to friends. I am really touched about your and Rick’s idea of wanting to “give back” to the ocean environment…I’ll bet when you surf you’ve seen lots of bottlenose surfing along side you. I’ve seen Humpbacks surfing big swells out off Molokini just prior to a storm.” -Mari