Virginia Wine Pass Review

In theory, what's not to love about discount wine tasting passes? You buy a pass, visit wineries, and receive discounts on your purchases. Of course, it's not quite that simple. The value of the card really depends on the wineries that are included and the discounts that are offered. Also, discounts at wineries in locations that you're never actually going to visit are worthless. Just as bad are tiny discounts at wineries that you have no interest in visiting. As a result, many wine tourists "pass on the pass" because it's too difficult to determine whether it's worth it.

Fortunately, we at American Winery Guide (AWG) have done the "hard work" of visiting and reviewing over 550 wineries over the last few years. Using these reviews and aggregated wine critic ratings, we decided to evaluate a few of the popular wine tasting discount cards, including the including the Virginia Wine Pass to determine whether the quality of the wineries, and the types of discounts provided, are worth the cost of the card. For particular regions, we determined how many AWG-recommended wineries were included in each plan and then calculated the costs and the savings.

There are 59 Virginia wineries that received at least 4.5 stars from AWG reviewers or have a 3.5+ aggregated wine rating, i.e. wineries whose wines consistently score above 85 points or win gold at international wine competitions. Nearly half of those wineries provide discounts to Virginia Wine Pass holders, and the even better news for those in the metro D.C. area is that nineteen of the wineries are within a two hour drive of Washington D.C.

Many of the discounts require the purchase of wine in addition to the cost of the tasting, though there are a few wineries that discount the tasting fee. To recoup the full-year cost of the card ($69), you'll need to visit about fourteen Virginia wineries and spend roughly $300 in tasting fees and purchases during the year. As a result, the Virginia Wine Pass isn't particularly well suited for the infrequent Virginia wine tourist, but if you are a lover of Virginia wine and find yourself visiting dozens of wineries each year (or the same winery dozens of times) and/or stocking your cellar with cases of Virginia wine, the Virginia Wine Pass is well worth it. Because the pass is good from January through December of each year, discounts are provided midway through the year. You can currently get the pass for $34.50 using coupon code "16summerofun".

          AWG-recommended Virginia Wineries Providing Virginia Wine Pass Discounts – 1

A. Creek's Edge Winery
41255 Annas Lane, Lovettsville, VA
10% off bottle purchase

B. Hiddencroft Vineyards
12208 Axline Rd, Lovettsville, VA
  (AWG Review)
10% off bottle purchases

C. Breux Vineyards
36888 Breaux Vineyards Ln, Purcellville, VA
10% off food, wine, gifts

D. 868 Estate Vineyards
14001 Harpers Ferry Rd, Purcellville, VA
10% off bottle purchase

E. North Gate Vineyards
16031 Hillsboro Rd, Purcellville, VA
Complimentary chocolate pairing with purchase of standard tasting

F. Sunset Hills
38295 Fremont Overlook Ln, Purcellville, VA
  (AWG Review)
15% off purchases

G. 8 Chains North
38593 Daymont Ln, Waterford, VA
Two free tastings with bottle purchase

H. The Barns at Hamilton Station
16804 Hamilton Station Rd, Hamilton, VA
2 for 1 tasting

          AWG-recommended Virginia Wineries Providing Virginia Wine Pass Discounts – 2

A. The Winery at Bull Run
15950 Lee Highway, Centreville, VA
50% off tasting

B. Pearmund Cellars Winery
6190 Georgetown Rd, Broad Run, VA
Two free tastings with bottle purchase

C. Boxwood Winery
2042 Burrland Rd, The Plains, VA
20% off tasting

D. Philip Carter Winery
4366 Stillhouse Rd, Hume, VA
10% off bottle purchase

E. Desert Rose
13726 Hume Rd, Hume, VA
10% off bottle purchase

F. Gadino Cellars
92 Schoolhouse Rd, Washington, VA
15% off bottle purchase

G. Granite Heights Winery
8141 Opal Road, Warrenton, VA
10% off bottle purchase

H. Morais Vineyards and Winery
11409 Marsh Rd, Bealeton, VA
10% off bottle purchase

I. Potomac Point Vineyard and Winery
275 Decatur Rd, Stafford, VA
2 for 1 tasting

          AWG-recommended Virginia Wineries Providing Virginia Wine Pass Discounts – 3

       AWG-recommended Virginia Wineries Providing Priority Wine Pass Discounts – Group 3

A. DuCard Vineyards
40 Gibson Hollow Lane, Etlan, VA
2 complimentary tastings

B. CrossKeys Vineyard & Estates
6011 E Timber Ridge Rd, Mt Crawford, VA
  (AWG Review)
15% off case purchase

C. Pollak Vineyards
330 Newtown Rd, Greenwood, VA
10% off bottle purchase

D. DelFosse Vineyards
500 DelFosse Winery Lane, Faber, VA
  (AWG Review)
15% off purchases of 3 or more

E. Keswick Vineyards
1575 Keswick Winery Dr, Keswick, VA
$5 off any purchase

F. Horton Vineyards
6399 Spotswood Trail, Gordonsville, VA
  (AWG Review)
2 for 1 tasting

G. Jacey Vineyards
619 Train Lane, Wicomico Church, VA
2 for 1 tasting plus 10% off bottle purchases

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Published: July 3, 2016

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