Q: Can Maryland wineries ship wine to me?
A: YES! After many years of attempts, we finally changed the law to allow Maryland citizens to receive wine by mail, provided the winery has a Direct Shipper’s Permit from the state. Wineries can ship 18 cases per household annually.

Q. Can Delaware wineries ship wine to me?
A: Direct shipment via common carrier prohibited. (7101)(Del. Code, Title 4, Chapter 5, 501(c). On-Site sales Exception: Under Federal Law passed in 2002, Delaware residents visiting on-site at a winery may have wine shipped back to Delaware for their own personal use.

Q: Can Virginia wineries ship to me?
A: VA law provides for licensure by the ABC Board of wineries, farm wineries and breweries located within and outside of the Commonwealth to sell, deliver or ship by common carrier no more than two cases of wine or beer per consumer per month, in closed containers, to persons to whom alcoholic beverages may be lawfully sold in the Commonwealth for their personal use only and not for resale.

Q: Does glassware make a difference?
A: Dixie cup or fine crystal? Riedel or IKEA? The key to a good wine glass is simple: it must allow you to see, smell, swirl and sip your wine accordingly. This rules out painted and colored glass and typical cocktail glasses. An ideal wine glass is not necessarily expensive, but will have a tulip shape – a bowl at the bottom with a narrower opening at the top, allowing a wine’s aromatics to escape just far enough for your nose to catch. Fine, hand-blown crystal such as Riedel does make a difference when truly analyzing wine, but any appropriately-styled glassware does the job. Some wine glass makers even specialize the shape of the glass to grape variety! Just remember to look for clear, tulip shaped glasses, and you’ll thoroughly enjoy your wine with every sip.

Q: What’s the best way to select a wine to match with foods?
A: The old rule is to pair reds with meat, and whites with fish. But that leaves out way too many exciting details – what about herbs, spicy sauces, appetizers and desserts? The “new rule” is to pair the weight and body of wines and foods. For example, grilled salmon is fairly robust and can stand up to a light-to-medium red wine. While an herb-crusted pork tenderloin might fare well with a crisp white or dry rosé. That said, never feel intimidated into following any rule but your own: “Drink what you like!” Learn more about pairings in our “Appreciation” section.

Q: Which MD reds work best with foods hot off the grill?
A: Your char-grilled favorites will pair well with both Chambourcin and Cabernet Franc. Chambourcin can be light and fruity or rich with dark cherries and spice and can complement everything from grilled tuna, salmon to chicken and vegetables. Cabernet Franc is more of a powerhouse, needing something heavy – like steak – to pair with its medium-to-full body and bold tannins.

Q: How long can I keep an open bottle of wine?
A: It depends on how you store the wine once it’s been opened. Refrigerating an open bottle will prolong its life, as will using a vacuum pump sealer. It’s best to enjoy the wine within a few days of opening to ensure you experience all the intended fruit flavors and aromas.

Q: Where can I find information regarding places to stay, eat, and visit during my travels on the Delmarva’s Wine and Ale Trail?
A: Go to www.ocvisitor.com for immediate access to hotel, restaurant, and attraction information, as well as www.visitworcester.org for B & B info.

Q: Are there any transportation services to take me from place to place?
A: The Castle in the Sand Hotel offers an Ale Trail package in the Spring and Fall seasons. Call the Group Sales office at 1-800-552-7263 for more details and prices.


A special thanks to the Maryland Wine Association for their assistance with he FAQ’s.