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2019 Governors Cup Entries Being Accepted
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2019 Governors Cup Entries Being Accepted

Governor's Cup 2019 Entries are now being accepted through December 4, 2018. Wine shipments will be accepted November 19 - December 4, 2018.

11/19/2018 to 12/6/2018
When: Monday, November 19, 2018
Where: SHIP WINE to: 2019 VWA Governor's Cup
Jay Youmans c/o Capital Wine School
5207 Wisconsin Ave. Suite 7
Washington, District of Columbia  20015
United States
Contact: Laurie Aldrich

Online registration is closed.
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Calling all Virginia Winemakers! 


The Virginia Wineries Association is excited to announce the dates for the 2019 Governor’s Cup® Competition. The staff of the Virginia Wineries Association will again be managing the competition with Master of Wines Jay Youmans coordinating the judging for the competition. Jay is currently assembling a group of elite judges for the competition including Steven Spurrier. We are grateful for the continued support from the Virginia Wine Board to make this a premier, one-of-a-kind competition.


One of the most valuable and unique aspects of the Governor’s Cup® Competition is the education and feedback through tasting notes and forums. New this year, one educational seminar will be live streamed to multiple pre-determined regional locations across the Commonwealth. Mr. Youmans will lead this regional educational forum with the winemakers and vineyard managers of the Governor’s Cup® case wines, sharing their expertise in making the award winning wine.


There is no limit to the number of 100% Virginia Fruit wines, vintage 2012 or younger you may enter. Entering a wine into Governor’s Cup® can be a great marketing tool, as 80% of the wines the Virginia Wine Marketing Office uses for promotional events come from the Governor’s Cup® medal list. Winning a medal, being in the Case, and being awarded the Governor’s Cup® are all validation for the hard work you do throughout the year.


We continue to encourage wineries to enter your wines online. By entering your wine online, you will save $5 per wine. If you choose to mail in your entry, please visit for an entry form. The entry fee for all wines submitted by Gold, Silver & Bronze members will be $80 per wine entered online and $95 for all other member wines entered online. Your membership level will be known when entered and you will be charged accordingly. For paper entries the fees are $85 per entry for Gold, Silver & Bronze members sent through the mail and $100 for all other member entries.


Wines must be received between November 19, 2018 and December 4, 2018. Our preferred shipping partner is FedEx. In the past, there have been issues with UPS dropping the wines off curbside and not delivering them into the Capital Wine School. If FedEx is not already your preferred shipper, visit our website for more information about the FedEx PartnerShip program offered to VWA members. The PartnerShip program offers savings on every size shipment. 

Please note the change made in mid-2016 is that primary fermentation needs to take place onsite of the submitting winery to be eligible for the case and cup. Continuing this year, in an attempt to making the case more representative of all Virginia wines if the case does not include 1/3 of the minority wine (red/white), then the case will be made to have 4 wines or 1/3 of the minority wine (red/white). The wine with the highest overall score will be the Governor’s Cup® Winner. As always, we will not disclose scores or ranking of wines, so only medals awarded and case winners will be disclosed.


Plan to be at the Governor’s Cup Gala with your award winning wine February 26, 2019 to witness the announcement of the Governor’s Cup® and Governor’s Cup Case. All Gold medal winners will be notified by the week of February 6th, please have the point of contact you provide with your entry available between the 1st and the 8th of February to discuss the requirements and information needed for the Gala less than 3 weeks later.


Please note the rules and guidelines enclosed. Please feel free to contact the VWA office if you have any questions. We look forward to your participation this year. 


Best of Luck to all!

Virginia Wineries Association


Entry Rules & Reminders:

1.       Delivery of wines will be accepted between November 19 and December 4, 2018. All online entries, payment and wine must be received by December 4, 2018. Any entry that is received after December 4, 2018 will be rejected.

2.      To enter online and pay with PayPal, credit card or e-check, visit our website at and sign into your profile. You will be able to begin entering the data for the wines you will be submitting. Entries that are entered online will be $80 per entry for Gold, Silver, and Bronze members and $95 for all other wineries; entries whose paperwork and payment are mailed to our offices in N. Chesterfield will be $85 per entry for Gold, Silver, and Bronze and $100 for all other wineries. Do NOT send payment with your wine.

3.      Wines and ciders submitted to the competition must be made with 100% Virginia fruit.  You will attest to this when you enter your wine, certifying your entries meet this criterion.

4.      Wineries may enter as many wines as you wish.

5.      Be prepared with grape sources. This information will be collected – please include Vineyard name and location and contact information for each varietal in the wine blend.

6.      Make sure residual sugar is entered as a percentage.

7.       All vintage wines submitted must be vintage year 2012 or younger.

8.      There is a 50 case minimum to enter the Governor’s Cup.  This means that the winery must have 50 cases of the wine available for retail sales at the time of award (February 26, 2019). The competition and Governor’s Cup Case winners will be promoted to the public. This case minimum was set to ensure that consumers will have a chance to purchase these wines.

9.      Send wines with a copy of the packing slip sent as a receipt from online entry. Mark boxes “For Analysis Only – Not for Resale”.  Detailed mailing information is at the bottom of the enclosed form.

10.   We prefer you ship Fed Ex for ease of delivery to the Capital Wine School, but UPS is acceptable.

11.    Any wine that is delivered to the competition without a full and proper label will be disqualified from the judging. Please do not send wines with laboratory, temporary, photocopied or altered labels.


Governor’s Cup Case Rules & Reminders:

12.   Wines produced with primary fermentation being done on the licensed premises are eligible for the Governor’s Cup Case. All other wines are eligible for every level medal, but will not be considered eligible for the Governor’s Cup Case and therefore not eligible for the Governor’s Cup.

13.   Fruit wines & ciders may be entered in the Governor’s Cup competition; however, they are not eligible to be included in the Governor’s Cup Case.

14.   To increase diversity of the Governor’s Cup Case no more than 2 dessert and 1 sparkling wine in the Case.

15.   All wineries that produce a wine that makes the Governor’s Cup Case, the top 12 wines, will agree to sell 10 cases of that wine at $200 per case to be used for marketing purposes.

16.   The winners of the Governor’s Cup Case agree to pour the award winning wine during the Gala Event on February 26, 2019 at the Main Street Station.

17.   Cases winners are required to have a representative, preferably the winemaker, at the education forums.

18.   Any submitted wine that receives an award must be released to the public by February 26, 2019.


VWA is permitted to use and collect the data provided on the entry form (both electronic & mailed).

1025 Boulders Parkway, Suite 110
N. Chesterfield, VA 23225