The Producers of Wine Diamonds: Uncorking America’s Heartland are pleased to release the Official Movie Trailer for Wine Diamonds.  Donations and corporate sponsorships are still available.


Road Trip to Minnesota & Wisconsin

OnTheRoad2The Wine Diamonds film crew will be hitting the road soon to spend a few days in Minnesota and Wisconsin filming at wineries and vineyards. We reached out to our wine industry network of friends to help us connect with some of the industry’s leaders, pioneers, up and comers, and a range of big and smaller operations. Big thanks to Mike White (Iowa State University, Viticulture Field Specialist) who provided an exhaustive list of exceptional contacts. Thanks Mike!

Our list is still coming together but we’ve got a great range of visits planned. The following locations are confirmed:

Chankaska Creek Ranch & Winery (Kasota, MN)
Indian Island Winery & Winterhaven Vineyards (Janesville, MN)
Northern Vineyards Winery (Stillwater, MN)
Alexis Bailly Vineyard (Hastings, MN)
Great River Vineyard & Lake Pepin Winery (Lake City, MN)
Elmaro Vineyard (Trempealeau, WI)
Danzinger Vineyard (Alma, WI)

Depending on the amount of time spent at each winery we may add a few more stops during our 3 days of filming. Our goal is to be able to spend at least 2 hours with each winery (more at some, less at others).

We’re thrilled to be able to meet, interview and film at these wineries. Please show your support to those wineries that allow us access and show support to our film.


Fundraiser Begins in 2 Days!

Fundraiser2days copyThe Wine Diamonds film team is excited to launch our major fundraising campaign on IndieGoGo (a crowd funding website) on Thursday, April 2nd. We hope you will join us by making a contribution to our independent feature length documentary film about the new frontier of wine, the Midwest!

We’ll be filming in Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Minnesota, Nebraska and Wisconsin. If funding goes very well (and there is enough interest) we may add to the number of Midwestern states and include Michigan or Indiana or Kansas. If you’re from one of these states and feel strongly that Wine Diamonds should film there we’d love to hear from you. It costs about $10,000 to take the team on a major filming road trip..but we’d love to be able to film all over the heartland.

Sunrise Over Brickyard Hill Vineyard

We’ve been talking for a while about getting out into a vineyard, pre-dawn, and set-up for a time lapse of the rising sun over a vineyard.  Of course you’re never quite sure what the weather will have in store for you when planning such an shoot.  Kirk and I were talking last Friday afternoon about heading down to Fireside Winery’s Brickyard Hill Vineyard the next morning to shoot the sunrise and capture other vineyard footage.   While we were talking on the phone I also mentioned the Iowa State Fair Wine Experience was happening as well and that being there to interview Iowa Wine and Grape Association marketing director, Emily Saveraid and others, as well as wine fans would be a good idea.

Waking up at 2:30am seemed like a good idea at the time! 🙂

Actually, it was a great idea!  We departed Vinton, IA at 3am and arrived at the Brickyard Hill Vineyard at 3:50, set-up, and waited for the sun to rise (and hoping we’d guessed correctly where they sun would actually break).  The vineyard was completely blanketed in darkness when we arrived,  temperature cool, the sky was mostly clear, and on the western horizon a nearly full-moon was getting ready to set.  In the pre-dawn darkness we could hear raccoons chatting in the nearby woods, and slowly the sky began to lighten and warm, and song birds announced revelry noting the beginning of a new day, and we were already shooting the time lapse and just about to film, with a second camera, the rising sun through and over the vineyard with our jib (a device that allows a camera to move toward and above objects (more than 10 feet above) and gives the feeling of flight.  Very cool!

We filmed, scrambled to reset shots, ran back and forth, reset, and by 7:30am we had our complete sunrise time lapse shot (from complete darkness, to rich warm hues, to bright sunshine); and then we walked through the 13 acre vineyard shooting additional footage for the documentary.

The following photographs will help you experience, vicariously, our early morning filming.  Enjoy and remember, if you haven’t yet, please share our project (Wine Diamonds: Iowa Uncorked) with your friends.  Check out our complete photo album on our Facebook page.  Thanks!

Brickyard Hill Vineyard: pre-dawn
Brickyard Hill Vineyard: pre-dawn
Kirk (Cinematographer) uses the jib to gain altitude and fluid movement while capturing the sunrise.
The rising sun over Fireside Winery's Brickyard Hill Vineyard.
The rising sun over Fireside Winery’s Brickyard Hill Vineyard.
Kirk shooting through the LaCrosse grapes.
Kirk shooting through the LaCrosse grapes.
Brianna grapes back lit by the early morning sunshine.
Brianna grapes back lit by the early morning sunshine.