Thin Skinned is a documentary Lifestyle Series being developed by Mastermind Studios. Thin Skinned is a look into the world of organic winemaking in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia, through the eyes of Stephen Cipes, an ex-NY city developer, turned environmental guru. Stephen and his team battle droughts, forest fires, bottle shortages, bureaucracy, and a pandemic as they approach winemaking and farming from an environmental and regenerative perspective. They follow exacting processes in planting and harvesting by the moon and finishing the wine within the sacred geometry of the Summerhill Pyramid. The timing and conditions must be perfect to continue their history of winning the world’s top wine awards.
On top of running Canada’s busiest winery, maintaining a Demeter Biodynamic certified farm, and managing Canada’s largest organic restaurant, Stephen is now developing the World Forum for Food Production and Culinary College for Humanity. He aims to teach people how to grow their own food, even on urban rooftops and balconies, and to prepare delicious meals with zero packaging and zero waste. Stephen sees Summerhill as the ideal setting to bring people into the food production, the restaurant, the cellar, and the gardens where the farm is the classroom. Stephen says, “Food production for the eight billion of us is the single largest factor in climate change and it’s the one thing that we can do for ourselves. We’ve become disconnected from where our food comes from and disconnected from ourselves and each other. As we approach ten billion people on the planet by 2050, climate change, poverty, and the pressures of rapid population growth are undeniable. When nations become hungry, they go to war!” Stephen sees Summerhill as an organization of “crusaders for planet peace through nature”, starting with wine. Grapes are “Thin Skinned” and they absorb the toxins from the environment around them (just like people).
As altruistic as Stephen’s vision is, it’s not without drama and each episode of Thin Skinned at Summerhill Pyramid Winery will capture the dynamics of running a family business while maintaining an army of over 200 staff. Chaos is a word often used to describe the pandemonium of working at Summerhill. There are new ideas and hurdles to jump through every day. Even Stephen, Li, Ezra, Michael, Jeremy and Matthew find it challenging to work in this fluid environment. But, Stephen doesn’t have time to lose. He just turned 78 and his doctor has told him that he needs to reduce the demands on his heart. Stephen wants to lead the most active and productive life he can. In this intimate, funny and engaging series, we’ll learn about the man behind one of the top winery brands in the world and we’ll follow Stephen on a path to reinvent himself and his winery to unite the world with a loving universal consciousness and save the planet from self-destruction.