Vivino is an app with so many functions it's hard to know where to begin, but it's easy to see that it's a valuable tool for stews on yachts.
It includes location services, social aspects and an unmatched resource of wine information worldwide. The idea is this: 'Take a photo of any wine label to tap into the wisdom of more than 4 million wine lovers.'
The main feature is the use of photo recognition. Using a catalogue of over 3,400,000 wines, you can scan a label to get a rating, average price, tasting notes from other users, and information on the winery and grapes plus suggestions for food pairings.
For stewardesses this is a valuable resource - not many yacht stews are professional sommeliers, and as valuable as the WSET courses are, you can't possibly know every wine. This app has in excess of 4 million users and, being aimed at wine lovers, it garners honest, personal commentary without any pretension. It puts extended knowledge in the palm of your hand for a princely sum of absolutely nothing. It's free!
'Find the Best Wines Near You'
Using location services, this function spots where you are and lists all the places in radius of the vicinity selling wine.
Whether it's a local bar which stocks just one wine to a supermarket selling 88, you can scroll through their selections which are separated into red, white and other. Each comes with a rating, a price tag and the region.
Coming into a new port and trying to find a particular wine for the boss? No problem. Dropping off the guests and in dire need of a bar with your favourite red? Easy peasy.
'Share Your Wines with Friends'
It's ok - Vivino isn't telling you to let everyone have a drop - it's just to share knowledge. You can also follow your friends, much like twitter or instagram, and compare reviews and notes.
As a stewardess myself, I know firsthand that it's not uncommon for preference sheets to be littered with inaccuracies. With this app you'll be able to easily keep note of your guests' wine preferences. There could come a day when someone you know has previous charter guests of yours - if you've put this app to good use you'll have a treasure trove of wine information to share.
Not only that, once you've rated and added a few wines in your catalogue you begin to earn rankings and badges, giving it a really fun element too.
'Get Personalized Recommendations'
If your boss is the type to readily accept advice you'll be able to recommend him wines based on those he already loves. Otherwise, just rate the wines you drink and enjoy the new suggestions on your next day off.
'Discover Wines Whenever Wherever'
The ability to discover information about the grape, the vineyard and the region at any time can be infinitely useful.
This app even gives an in depth infographic about each grape, with acidity levels, colour and body.
There's not much you can't learn with Vivino. Stumped by a wine list at a classy restaurant? Never fear - Vivino is here.
Obviously the developers have to make some money somewhere, so there is also a premium version for a fee. This extension allows you highest priority on what they call manual matching. Essentially, when you find a wine that isn't in the catalogue a team of experts will find it for you and it also allows you to keep track of your wine cellar. If you were so inclined, this means you could catalogue all of the wines that come with each delivery, sort by price, rating and date, and view the history of when each bottle is bought or consumed.
Personally I'd suggest testing the free version first, and if you find it as useful a tool as I have, it's worth forking out the £2.99 for the upgrade, even if it's just to support the developers.
This really is the most useful app I've found for stewardessing. You can never know too much about wine.