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Posts Tagged ‘wine apps’

Philip James, CEO and cofounder of the interactive wine database and social network Snooth, has been a busy guy lately. The ink was barely dry on press releases announcing Snooth’s new iPhone app when another was issued announcing the launch of Snooth’s sister Website, Lot18.com. Below are details on both offerings, along with information about a third new tech tool aimed at automating the wine appreciation experience. Blogging aside, I personally like keeping that experience as tech-free as possible, but… no judgment on the early adopters.

  • The newish app Snooth Wine Pro lets you take a picture of a wine label with your phone and, once the wine has been identified in Snooth’s database, quickly find a bottle of it in a store near you. You can also create wishlists and maintain a virtual cellar, instantly read reviews, and add reviews of your own. Snooth Wine Pro is available for $4.99 in Apple’s App Store. A free, ad-supported version is also available.
  • The just-launched Lot18.com is selling wines in a flash-sale-style format at savings of up to 60 percent. It’s a membership-by-invitation marketplace, but securing an invitation involves nothing more than clicking a Get Invite Code button on the site and filling in your name, e-mail, and zip code. Alder Yarrow offered a good list of these sites last summer on Vinography, and his post mentions some interesting views from Good Grape on the same topic.
  • Argentina’s Argento Winery has released its 2009 Argento Malbec with a QR barcode that, when scanned with a smartphone equipped with a QR code reader, provides access to winery and winemaker information, tasting notes, food pairings, and videos. Other wineries jumping on the QR code bandwagon include Kendall-JacksonJUSTIN Winery of Paso Robles; Kind Vines of Arizona; and wineries in Portugal and Australia. Free QR code readers are easy to find online; here’s a good CNet review of a few.
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Last night, for the first time in ages (blame rookie motherhood), I cooked from what used to be my go-to cookbook: Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, by Deborah Madison, the founding chef of Greens in San Francisco. Madison’s book is so well-organized and beautifully laid out, and turning back to it allowed me to stumble upon its charming section on wine pairing.

Finding the right wine to pair with a particular meal or type of cuisine is a very technology-friendly undertaking—which is why there are about a zillion apps for that. But when you want to spend more than a millisecond choosing wine to go with Sunday dinner—when you want to understand why eggplant calls for Chenin Blanc or olives for Chianti—consider looking in one of your favorite cookbooks. Or wine books, for that matter—I also love Karen MacNeil‘s treatment of this issue in her Wine Bible. Among Karen’s recommendations: “Pair great with great, humble with humble” (so no In-N-Out with that Chateau Margaux), and salt (think soy-flavored Asian dishes, Stilton cheese) plus sweet (Riesling, Port) equals stunning.

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