Developer: Matthieu DUCROCQ
Price: $3.99 Download on the App Store
Open Cellar – You decide to pick up a nice Cabernet on your way home for that special meal your significant other is preparing to celebrate your anniversary.
What kind of red wine do you choose? American, French, Italian, Australian or Somalian? What year? What price? There are so many variables and varietals that not even the man behind the counter has a clue what’s a good wine.
Think of Open Cellar as your personal sommelier, someone to guide you in selecting the right wine, for the right food and for the right occasion. It’s essentially a database of wines recommended by Mathieu Ducrocq, the developer, and for the wines you buy and store when the time is right.
If you’re befuddled by wine, even before you drink it, this app will help you sort things out, but it’s mainly aimed at the connoisseur – someone who is particularly finicky about the wines they drink and are apt to buy bottles by the case and store them in their wine cellars. You can record notes about the wines you’ve tried, organize the wines in your cellar and view their location on a graphical display.
Thanks to my having lived in France for a few years, I read and speak French reasonably well. If you’re not so fortunate, you’re not going to find this app of much help because the most useful info — the food and wine pairing — are in French. If you don’t know what “Brochettes de coeurs de canard” are, then knowing that a Cotes du Rhone-Villages makes a good match is hardly helpful.
In addition, Open Cellar’s food-wine associations are limited to French wines. If that Cab you have a yen for is Californian (as it should be) or some other country's, then you’re out of luck.
Open Cellar is easy to navigate and use. It ties in with a desktop version (PC or Mac) and you can sync files from one to the other. You also read and share your impressions and opinions with other oenologists.
Last, Open Cellar crashed on me, once. That could have been a fluke, but I figured I mention it in case others experience the same issue and would like to weigh in on this app.