What can you say, we live in a techie world and that doesn’t over reach wine. But new technology is definitely not always a bad thing. Come on who hasn’t enjoyed at least one rousing game of Angry Birds! And while wine applications may not be as addictive or frustrating as throwing those little birds at bricks, they can be just as entertaining and useful. From tracking your cellar to recording the exquisite flavor profile of your favorite vintages or just finding a fun pairing for a night-in with your friends, the world of wine apps is ever growing.
Like thousands of others out there, I am glued to my iPhone. It is rare that it isn’t within arm’s reach while I’m enjoying a glass of wine – if you follow me on Instagram (KelseyIvey) you may have already discovered this . But the technology chain definitely has its benefits.
Here are two of my favorite free wine applications – yes I am a cheapskate & proud of it.
This is one super multi-tasking wine app. From pairings to wine recommendations, to wine notes and reviews, Hello Vino just about covers it all – and with detailed, organized and inclusive categories.
This application is here to help. For its pairings tab you have two initial needs served: I need wine vs. I have wine. Additionally it then breaks down those two sections further as well to really hone in on your needs. To find recommendations the app has five categories: wine with meal/food, wine for an occasion, wine by taste preference, wine from country/region, and holiday wines & gifts. Now talk about service and it doesn’t stop there.
Once you have selected one of these portions it then walks you through a series of additional questions to narrow down the options. When you finally reach the wine suggestion, it presents you with its top choice of varietal, three brands to try (acclaimed, random, value) plus two more wine varieties that fit as well.
Within the application you can also search for wines based off of various facts and preferences that you already know, you can add wines that you have tasted – take a photo, jot down some important notes & flavors and save – plus you can listen to wine reviews and share all of this information via social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook.
I highly recommend downloading this app and playing around with it for an hour of two – like when you are sipping some Oregon Pinot Noir and watching The Bachelor. Check out all of its features and then test out its amazing memory-reading skills. Oh and did I mention, it also has a coupon and offer locater – now if I could just get it to track down a drinking buddy for me!
This is my favorite app to take wine tasting with me – especially if I am planning to write about the wine later. Allowing me to record a specific wine’s major facts including producer, varietal and vintage plus take a photo that is linked, the application covers all the general information I need when jotting down a wine and saves it safely to my phone. But what makes Wine Notes truly special is the additional features and tabs that take this general note taking application to the next level.
What I really love about this app is its additional information tabs for Profile, Flavor and Color.
Within this section of the note about a selected wine the app allows you to record the wine’s sweetness, tannins, acidity and body using a sliding scale for each. This helps to jog my memory about how the wine feels in my mouth and recall its subtle characteristics.
The flavor tab allows you to select images for the different flavors you taste. The visualization of the various flavors helps me to pin-point that exact zing or tartness to a natural item. The app however could use a little expansion in its flavor offerings, but it does provide a solid foundation for taste recognition. I use the additional notes field to add other flavors or more specific flavors that I may taste.
Finally an ingenious tab with this app is the color section – ok I just think it is really cool because I like to play with it. Basically it has two sliding scales that adjust the color. Holding your phone next to your glass you can match the general color of the wine from a rich, ruby red to nearly clear white and every shade inbetween. One of the sliders adjust the color of the wine and the second the saturation or intensity of the color.
Other features include a section to record your location (where you are tasting the wine – home, tasting room, bar, etc), region, country, alcohol content and an additional field for notes and rating. Once you have added multiple wines into the application then you can also browse your wines by the different categories and add wines to your wish list.
Finally you can also share all this information with your friends and followers via e-mail, Twitter and Facebook!
Other honorable mentions to download:
With an easy to use and engaging interface, this wine app helps you to create delicious food and wine pairings. Choose a plate based off a food category such as meat, pasta or dessert and then scroll through to find your specific/close enough entrée. With each item, the app offers three wine varieties to complement.
A fun app that takes into account your flavor preference, mood and price point to recommend specific wines. The app asks you five simple questions using pictures to determine your tastes and allows you to specify the occasion so you can find that perfect wine for every reason.
WS Vintage Chart
Developed by Wine Spectator as a quick reference for vintages. Start by choosing the wine growing country and then the region. It will then list the vintage age, rating and whether or not to drink or hold the wine. Basic and doesn’t include all varieties for the regions, but very usable for those buying older wines.
What wine apps (free or not) do you love to use?