With hundreds of wineries, wines, and places to enjoy them, being an oenophile (or even a casual wine fan) may seem like an intimidating endeavor.
But all that variety and information is also what makes wine such a pleasure. To that end, I’m going to present a list of smartphone apps that I think are excellent both for learning about wine and developing your own palate.
This list leans heavily toward Android apps, because that’s what I use, but I’ve included iPhone/iPad links where they’re available.
Wine for Dummies
This isn’t a “traditional” app per se but rather, it’s a fun and easy to follow video packaged in app form, so you can watch it on the plane ride to California wine country or your living room.
Watching it on my Android tablet, I found it offered an excellent balance between substance and style. (I also highly recommend the “Wine for Dummies” book for anyone approaching wine.)
The Wine for Dummies app is currently $7.99 at you can find it at the Google Play Store.
Swirl Pro – A Wine Guide
Swirl Pro aims to be an all-in-one resource and journal for any serious (or beginning) wine drinker.
The app offers access to a library of thousands of wines, sorted by region, grape, and other characteristics. You can look up individual wines or browse through its recommendations. But the best feature of this app may be its tools for adding your own notes about wines and marking your favorites for future reference.
Finally, I can recommend this app for its excellent interface and design, which is worthy of the subject it covers.
The Swirl Pro wine app is $2.99, also at the Google Play Store.
Once you start a serious bottle collection, Wine Cellar offers one of the best ways to keep track of it.
You can type in a bottle’s information or scan its bar code for faster input.
The app lets you organize wines using logical characteristics such as the year (term, vintage) of the wine and its region. I find this is helpful for deciding on wines for special occasions.
The Wine Cellar app for Android is $2.20 at the Google Play Store.
Winerypedia Winery Locator
Wineries abound throughout the U.S., from Washington to Texas to Long Island, and this excellent app helps you find them.
Using GPS, Winerypedia determines the nearest wineries, and offers directions and the ability to call or e-mail straight from the app.
This is ideal for travel, but even if you’re staying home, you can have fun learning about your favorite wineries and following their social media accounts.
Sonoma Insider and Taste of Napa
These two apps are almost like Winerypedia, but with a focus on their respective Californian wine regions.
Both apps offer tools for finding not only wineries, but restaurants and other attractions at these two wonderful vacation spots.
Sonoma Insider is a more complete resource for its area, while Taste of Napa focuses on vendors providing exclusive deals.
Either one of these region specific apps would make an excellent companion to a trip.
Ashlee McCullen is a staff writer for ApronAddicts.com, a website about kitchen fashion and home style. She also writes about mobile technology and self-improvement.