The Best Wine Apps for Wine Lovers

by Lizzi Hobcraft September 26, 2018

The Best Wine Apps for Wine Lovers

Before the advent of the smart phone, you probably chose your wine in one of four ways:

  • There’s the recommendation from a friend – a little hit and miss as they may have very different tastes in wine to you and, indeed, income.
  • A recommendation from a Sommelier – more accurate as, hopefully, they will have asked you a few questions to be able to suggest something you might like within your budget.
  • There’s a happy chancing upon a fantastic wine – perhaps on a sun soaked terrace in the south of France?
  • Or, my personal favourite, the most pretty or colourful label – the most ‘Russian Roulette’ method of choosing a wine, as a pretty label doesn’t necessarily denote the quality of a wine.

You’ve probably used one, or maybe all of the above methods but, thanks to technology, there is a far easier and quicker way to gauge whether or not you might enjoy a bottle of wine - the wine app. In this post we recommend the top three apps for wine lovers, to help you choose, catalogue, learn more about, and enjoy your wines. The added bonus being that they are all free to download!

Vivino – Apple App Store star rating of 4.8/5

Vivino is probably the most well-known of wine apps. It has around 30 million users (one of the world’s largest wine communities), having scanned up to 560 million wine labels to date. So what can you do in this app?

  •  Scan – You can use the scanner to either scan the label of a wine bottle, or the wine list in a restaurant.
  • Learn – Once scanned, the app presents you all the information you need about the wine, including all the purchasing options.
  • Review – You can see how other people have rated that particular wine, the average price and any reviews people have given.
  • Buy – It has a feature so you can get the wine delivered directly to your door.
  • Rate – You can add in your own rating for a wine, as well as make any notes on what you did, or didn’t enjoy about it.
  • Track – You can easily see what you have tried in the past and what you thought about the wine.
  • Store – There is a free cellar tracker, so you know what you have in your collection at any given time.

Wine Searcher – Apple App Store star rating of 4.7/5

Wine searcher is much the same as Vivino in that it can be used to look up a wine to search prices, critic scores, available vintages and where to buy.

Some of the other features are:

  • It will give you information on the grape variety, as well as region that it is grown in, which helps expand your knowledge. 
  • You can use the ‘Recognize Label’ function to scan a bottle, or simply type in the name of the product.
  • You can use the rate and review functions to record the wines you try, and the ‘My Ratings’ feature ensures that you always buy 5 star wines as the wines come from a palate you trust – your own!
  • The location feature on the app shows you all of the wine shops around you.

One of the advantages of this wine app is the News function. The news feed gives you industry news directly to your phone, which is a nice way of catching up and learning about what is going on in the world of wine.

Hello Vino – Apple App Store star rating of 4.2/5

Technically this app is for the American consumer.  However, I wanted to include it as a really good example of how an app can help with food and wine matching. With just a few taps you can get some great suggestions of types of wines to pair with your food. That’s not all this app does, however, as it boasts a host of other features. Let’s break it down:

For this example, I tapped that I wanted a red wine, with a bold and rich texture, with flavours of black cherry. It then suggested that I might like a Cabernet Sauvignon, then listed some wines I might like to try. Although it is wines for the American consumer that the app recommended, the fact that it suggests a grape variety is actually quite useful. I can then go out to my local wine shop and look at Cabernet Sauvignons with the confidence that I am probably going to like that style of wine.

Again, the food matching aspect of the app is quite similar:

For an example, I clicked that I was eating pasta, with a tomato/Marinara sauce. The app then suggested that I might like to try matching it with Chianti, a red wine with good acidity that will match up to the acidity in a tomato based sauce. I can be fairly confident that if I go to my local wine shop and look for a Chianti, it will pair with my pasta dish well.

As with the other apps, you can also catalogue the wines you have bought and tried, adding in the notes you made and a star rating so you know whether to buy a certain wine again. So, although it has the downside of being geared to the American market, you can get some use out of the features.

Of course, all suggestions from an app have to be taken with a pinch of salt, as nothing beats actually trying a wine to see if you like it – and isn’t that half the fun? But the great thing with apps is that they learn from the user, so the more you use them, the more suitable a match they will suggest to your particular palate. So why not give an app a try, to help you explore the world of wine.

Lizzi Hobcraft
Lizzi Hobcraft

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