A new documentary, "American Wine Story", details people who change their lives, and whose lives are changed, by wine. Focusing on the story of Oregon's Brooks Winery, the film concerns the untimely death of Jimi Brooks age 38 in 1994 and how his younger sister, Janie Brooks Heuck, stepped in to continue his dream and reconsider the path of her own life's journey.
Dozens of other wineries, and their founders who started their lives over to pursue a calling to the vineyard, are also profiled. From Mike Officer of Carlisle Winery and Vinyeards maxing out credit cards and cashing in 401(k)s to former NFL Quarterback Drew Bledsoe channeling his passion after retiring from football to start Doubleback Winery in Walla Walla.
Oregon Pinot Noir Pioneer Dick Erath is also featured in the film. If you've ever heard the term "wine grower" and wondered what this amalgamation of grape grower and wine maker meant, he explains it well in the movie's trailer.
"The term winegrower is what we call ourselves," begins Erath. "Not winemaker. It's a transition from the outside world of the vineyard to the inside world of the winery. But it's all one continuum. We have to be on board for the whole trip."