In the Midwest, family tradition is something we hold dear. Stories, recipes, and traditions are passed down through the generations; celebrated and shared with neighbors and loved ones on occasions big and small, joyful and bittersweet. Such is the story of fifth generation winemaker Sandi Vojta and Prairie Berry Winery.
Founded in 1999 in a 500 sq. ft. basement, Sandi, together with her father and husband, set out to create a unique South Dakota experience by way of a family tradition of winemaking. Sandi’s great-great-grandmother, Anna Pesä, immigrated to the Dakota Territory in 1876 from Moravia (now a part of the Czech Republic). On the South Dakota prairie, Anna used the local fruits she called ‘prairie berries’ to create wine for her family.
Today, from a 20,000 sq. ft. state of the art wine production facility in the Black Hills of South Dakota, Prairie Berry Winery has grown into one of the most successful wineries in the region and produces some of the most popular and award-winning wines in the Midwest, including the widely acclaimed Red Ass Rhubarb.
Prairie Berry Winery wines have won more than 1,000 international awards at many prestigious wine competitions, including the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco International, Riverside International, Pacific Rim International, Finger Lakes International, and Indy International.
But beyond the fruits and grapes woven into every bottle of wine Sandi produces are the stories of women breaking ground, stories of family, stories of place, and, of course, a little bit of South Dakota.