DC Travel Guide  |  Food

Can You Bring Your Kids to Maryland and Virginia Wineries?

Illustrations by Edwin Fotheringham.

Nearly every winery has a story of children climbing on tractors or running into off-limits vineyards. One boss tells of being chewed out for “having such a large vineyard” by a father whose child had gotten lost in the vines.

Which is why some people feel kids have no place at wineries. They rail against some parents’ lack of wild-child supervision, drinking and driving with kids in the car, and bringing noisy children to an otherwise peaceful setting. On the other side, work-stressed parents argue for the chance to spend family time outdoors, with an adult beverage, after a long week.

A handful of wineries draw a hard line. Chateau O’Brien, Delaplane Cellars, and RdV Vineyards don’t allow anyone under 21 on their properties. Others, including Chrysalis Vineyards, Fabbioli Cellars, and Paradise Springs Winery deem certain areas—such as the tasting room or a patio—off-limits to anyone under 21.

Meanwhile, others, such as Potomac Point Vineyard & Winery, provide play areas with toys. Some, including the Winery at Bull Run, have “family zones.”

Even if they don’t actively court kids, many wineries allow them. Maybe the ultimate compromise is when wineries welcome families but also offer adults-only sections to keep everyone happy. Count Cana Vineyards and Winery and Stone Tower Winery in that camp.

Read more from our winery guide: 

This article appears in the May 2017 issue of Washingtonian.

Nancy Bauer

Nancy Bauer is founder of the popular Facebook group, Virginia Wine Love, and the website VirginiaWineLove.com.