VWE ACADEMY: All About Virginia Wine with Jay Youmans MW & Caroline Hermann MW - Includes Online Class #1 & Live Class #2

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Saturday February 18th

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VWE ACADEMY: All About Virginia Wine with Jay Youmans MW & Caroline Hermann MW - Includes Online Class #1 & Live Class #2

Class #1 Online Via Zoom & Class #2 Live at Main Street Station
10:00 am - 12:00 pm


In partnership with the Capital Wine School, the Virginia Wine Expo is launching the new Virginia Wine Expo Academy (VWEA), a unique and unparalleled opportunity to learn more about Virginia wine.  A two-class course, All About Virginia Wine, will be VWEA's first Certificate program.  

Mission and Primary Goal

The mission of VWEA is to be the gold standard in Virginia wine education.  VWEA will offer consumers, trade, professionals, and educators a complete educational path to learn more about Virginia wine with an in-depth annual course called All About Virginia Wine.  After taking the course, candidates will receive a Certificate and become Members of VWEA, joining an exclusive club whose membership includes discounts on select future Virginia Wine Expo events.

VWEA's primary goal is to foster a state-, regional-, and nation-wide network of Virginia Wine Ambassadors, who will promote, support, and champion Virginia wine throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia and well beyond.

Your Ticket to All About Virginia Wine Includes the Following

  • Enrollment in the two-class All About Virginia Wine, which concludes on Saturday, March 4, at historic Main Street Station. The first class will be held online on Saturday morning, February 18 (10am - 12pm), and the second class will be held live on Saturday morning, March 4 (9:30am - 11:30am), at Main Street Station, and will include a tasting of 12+ exceptional Virginia wines.

Ticket Package Availability

Tickets to All About Virginia Wine can be purchased a la carte or as part of a ticket package called 'VIP Academy', which includes the following:

  • Saturday morning, Feb. 18, VWE Academy, All About Virginia Wine with Jay Youmans MW & Caroline Hermann MW, Online - Class #1 +
  • Saturday morning, March 4, VWE Academy, All About Virginia Wine with Jay Youmans MW & Caroline Hermann MW, Live - Class #2 at Main Street Station +
  • Saturday, March 4, VIP/Early Afternoon Walk-Around Grand Tasting

Package price is $199, a $45 savings from the $244 a la carte price.  Check out all the ticket packages here.

NOTE:  This ticket package will permit Academy attendees to enter the ongoing VIP/Early Walk-Around Grand Tasting immediately after the Academy class #2 concludes at 11:30 a.m.  The VIP/Early Walk-Around Grand Tasting session is located just steps away from the Academy class area on the same floor of Main Street Station and continues until 4:30 p.m.  

VWEA Course Requirements and Faculty

The VWEA course will consist of two classes: the first class will be held online (via Zoom) a few weeks before the main Expo week and the second class will be held live at beautiful Main Street Station during the Expo's biggest weekend on Saturday, March 4.  Membership in VWEA - including the Certificate - will only be granted after both classes are completed.

The first, virtual class will primarily focus on Virginia wine's history and culture, terroir, biodiversity, viticultural regions, techniques and challenges, economics, distinctive characteristics, and place in the greater wine world.  The second, live class with a will be a thorough, comprehensive tasting of Virginia's signature grape varietals and blends from select regions of the state.

The VWEA course will be team-led by Jay Youmans, Educational Director and Owner of the Capital Wine School and a Master of Wine, and Caroline Hermann, an instructor at the Capital Wine School and also a Master of Wine.  There are about 416 individuals in the world who hold the Master of Wine designation.

Tickets purchased to attend All About Virginia Wine are 100% refundable if the refund is requested fifteen days before the first online class is held.

Special Benefits For Matriculants Who Complete the Course Requirements

After completion of the two-class All About Virginia Wine course requirements and receiving the Certificate, discounts of up to 30% on select future Expo events will be offered. 

Special Discount for the Trade

Qualifying members of the wine trade will receive a 20% discount on the cost to enroll in All About Virginia Wine.  Interested members of the trade should e-mail Alex Papajohn at apapajohn@VariantEvents.com for details on trade enrollment.

Future VWEA Courses

In the future, VWEA is likely to add courses which focus on our Guest Regions, which rotate on an annual basis, and other courses which focus on more specific topics relating to Virginia wine.

We hope you join us and become Members of the Virginia Wine Expo Academy!

The Details

  • All-inclusive, interactive, immersive seminar
  • Taste 12+ Virginia wines from various regions of the Commonwealth
  • The price you pay includes BOTH Class #1 online and the live Class #2 on Saturday, March 4 at Main Street Station PLUS admission to the Saturday VIP/Early Walk-Around Grand Tasting on Saturday
  • This first class is exclusively presented online via Zoom and will be taped and will begin promptly at 10:00 am
  • Zoom links will be sent a few days prior to class

About Jay Youmans, Master of Wine & Co-Seminar Leader

  • Jay is the owner and Education Director for The Capital Wine School in Washington, DC, www.capitalwineschool.com. He teaches the wine course for L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, MD. His credentials include: Advanced Level Sommelier - AS (Court of Master Sommeliers), Certified Wine Educator – CWE (Society of Wine Educators), French Wine Scholar – FWS (French Wine Society), Italian Wine Professional - IWP, Burgundy Wine Educator ( BIVB), Bordeaux Wine Educator (CIVB), Napa Valley Wine Ambassador, and Master of Wine - MW (Institute of Masters of Wine), which he passed in 2004, receiving the Vina Errazuriz Award - www.mastersofwine.org.
  • For the past seven years Mr. Youmans has been the Competition Director for the Virginia Governor’s Cup® Wine Competition, one of the most stringent wine competitions held in the world.

About Caroline Hermann, Master of Wine & Co-Seminar Leader

  • Caroline Hermann, Master of Wine (MW), is a highly respected wine lecturer, having taught wine industry professionals since 2010 at the Capital Wine School in Washington DC. She has worked in many aspects of the industry, including wineries and retail sales, as well as wine law and regulations. She has studied viticulture, winemaking, and tasting analysis at the University of Bordeaux, and judges tasting competitions internationally. Caroline is a WSET Certified Educator for wine and Japanese sake, and is Washington DC's first woman Master of Wine.


  • Coming soon

All inclusive.  Price Covers Drink. 21 and over only and no infants or strollers, except at the Walk-Around Grand Tasting Locals Sunday Special on Sunday, March 5, 2023 at historic Main Street Station. 

  • + Combo Package
  • M Main Street Station
  • B Craft Beer
  • E Educational
  • F Food
  • Music
  • N New Event
  • S Seminar
  • W Wine
  • D Distilled Spirits
  • A Auction
  • C Cider

Advance tickets will only be available for sale on this website. Tickets may be available at the door at an increased price unless sold out. All tickets to the Virginia Wine Expo are nonrefundable.

Attendees must be 21 years of age or older to attend all Expo events, except the Sunday Walk-Around Grand Tasting