If you have been paying attention to my Twitter feed on the right you may have noticed that I have been using a new app called Vivino. I discovered it in August and have been trying it out since then. The free app (Apple and Android) allows you to take pictures of the label on a bottle of wine with your iPhone or other smart phone. It is then uploaded and they match it against their online database and pull up all the details on the wine. If for some reason it doesn’t match they have a “wine recognition team” that will manually do it for you in a day or so. So far I have found it has matched every wine I have tried. It doesn’t always get the year correct, but it is a simple click to change to the correct vintage. I have found it saves a bunch of time and is a great way to keep track of your wines. I have used CellarTracker for years and I absolutely love the program. I love the detail, the community notes, the reports and the ability to add all sorts of personal data. I use it to keep track of what I taste and all the bottles in my cellar. However it can be a painfully slow process to use your smart phone to enter a wine on CT. It also can be rather anti-social. Normally I just scribble notes and then (theoretically) enter them on my computer later. More often than not they don’t really get entered.
With Vivino a quick snapshot of the label is a far superior alternative. The cons to Vivino? I am not a big fan of the simple five-star rating. Not enough variance for me. I usually put my 100-point rating in the tasting notes. I also think the badges (You have earned the wine explorer badge!) are silly. Neither of these cons are enough to overcome its ease of use though. I especially like that I can link the wine I just scanned on Vivino to my Twitter account and have it appear automatically on my blog. Now in a perfect world CellarTracker would merge with Vivino and you could use your camera phone to pull up the wine on CellarTracker. That is what I really want But alas we do not live in a perfect world. Which could be one of the reasons I have a wine cellar in the first place. Cheers!