The world of wine can be overwhelming, intimidating and complex with ‘vionology’ (‘wine speak’) confusing beginners wishing to learn more - thankfully, the experts at Cult Wines have put together a list of the best fine wine apps to help. 

Tom Gearing, the managing director of Cult Wines and runner up in Season Eight of the BBC’s ‘The Apprentice’ said: “wine apps are great for novice enthusiasts to get the closest they can to a conversation with a wine expert. Through apps you are able determine what key fragrances, tastes and regions you really like and that’s a great starting point.”

With over a decade of fine wine investment and collection management services to a global audience, it’s safe to say they know a thing or two about wines.

The 5 best wine apps

1) Delectable

(Android, iOS: Free)

best wine apps

It’s the app of our dreams- the Instagram of wine. Delectable is renowned for one of the best wine label recognition features so it’s easy to search a wine’s age, tasting notes and reviews.

Users can be ‘verified’ meaning you can decipher reliable, expert opinion from amateur wine connoisseurs. You also get an overall rating so you can learn which is the most popular, liked wine in case you’re really stuck so overall, it’s one of the best wine apps on the market.

The positives:

– A fun feed to allow easy navigation

– The social aspect – connect, chat and meet fellow wine enthusiasts!

– Fantastic label recognition software

– Verified user feature

– Category focus and trending labels makes finding popular wines easy

The not so great bits:

– Niche, finer wines are sometimes missing from the app

2) Wine Searcher

(Android, iOS: Free)

best wine apps

This is the best app for those on a budget. Wine searcher is an incredible app tool that allows you to scan over 55,000 global retailers to find the best price for your bottle.

Naturally, the information surrounding wine regions and types of grapes is a cut above the rest and the app makes it easy to store this information for future use.

The positives:

– Budget friendly

– Daily articles to read

– Good links to underlying merchants

– Mobile friendly and easy to navigate

The not so great bits:

-The retailers listed bottle doesn’t always mean it’s still there. You may think you’ve found the perfect wine, but it could be out of stock!

– The free version of the app has no faults. However, some say that the annual subscription is unreasonable as you can find the same information for free via a google search

3) Vivino

(Android, iOS: Free)

best wine apps

Vivino offers information about wine to both novice and seasoned wine lovers. Not only does it tell you the region, tasting notes and ratings surrounding a specific wine, but it tells you how it ranks in comparison to other wines.

This feature makes it easier for the user to purchase different brands with similar tasting notes to wines they have previously enjoyed. If the app is unable to find the vintage you are looking for, Vivino’s customer service team is fantastic in manually identifying wines for their users.

The positives:

– A less personality focussed social feed. This may sound odd but for the user who couldn’t care less about what other people are drinking, this is perfect.

– Includes winemakers notes and compares similar wines at different price points

– Great customer service team

– Great food pairing suggestions

The not so great bits:

– The app sometimes does not find vintage wines, meaning the user must call customer service to get an answer

– The apps design. This may sound silly, but an all red app can become a little intense over time

4) Decanter Know Your Wine

(iOS: Free)

best wine apps

An app dedicated to teaching its users about wine. Could we think of anything better? This learning app comes with 10 free modules for users to increase their knowledge about some of the world’s best wine regions and grape varieties.

This is not a cramming tool or a confusing quiz, but rather an app designed to help information sink in through a series of short bursts.

The positives:

– Uses highly efficient learning methods. For instance, spaced repetition is scientifically proven to help a person’s long-term memory

– Questions are regularly added. There are over 600 wine questions broken down into 48 modules (over 10 of which are free)

– The app provides online quizzes for you to practice your learned knowledge.

– Provides a different, more proactive angle to learning about wine

The not so great bits:

– Several glitches in the past. Whilst many of these have now been fixed, issues included users permanently losing their completed course data due to an upgrade, lagging speed of questions and payment issues when choosing to upgrade the app.

– Not compatible with Android devices.

5) Cellar Tracker

(Android, iOS: Free)

best wine apps

A less visually aesthetic app but unsurprisingly, one of the most popular. With a database of over 2.1 million wines and 5.9 million tasting notes from community and wine experts, Cellar Tracker’s software quickly recognises and comments on wines once you enter or scan them in.

One user reviewed ‘once entered it is easy to keep track and the programme reminds you if a wine is in its drinking window or needs drinking up.’ Basically, it’s your best digital wine inventory.

The positives:

-Extremely large database

-Makes managing your wine collection easy and convenient

-Track your consumption history

– Reminds you if a wine is in its drinking window and shows the user the bottles current value

The not so great bits:

-Clunky interface. Not visually pleasing and can make an easy app appear overwhelming

– Dated design. You are unable to slide across pages but must scroll up and down the page instead

– Nothing too different than Cellar Tracker’s website which processes and offers information faster on a larger screen

About The Author

Sean Murphy

Driven by a passion for all things drinks-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over 10 years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink. Recently, his first book was published. Dubbed Gin Galore, it explores Scotland's best gins and the stories behind those that make them.

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