[UPDATE] – As of August 4th, the app is live on the App Store!
When Stu Grubbs of Distilld reached out to us to meet at TechWeek 2014 in Chicago, I was intrigued. Distilld, which is a whiskey scanner, is looking to do (and really build on) what Untapped has proven is what people are looking for – a way to check into their favorite (or not so favorite) drink! Distilld aims to take that a step further with things like almost-instant image recognition, weekly giveaways, and regular blog content that features new recipes and things to check out that are whiskey-related. We have word that a podcast is coming too!
It’s worth noting that Distilld already has a contender in the other side of the ring – an app by the name of Distiller, which is also an app for whiskey drinkers. Distiller offers recommendations and offers the same ability to rate the whiskey that you are drinking. We won’t go into too much details about the app, because that’s more for a review, but I will say that Distilld offers significantly more features and especially whiskeys within their app.
It should also be mentioned that Stu and his Distilld team didn’t build the app and bring in expert opinions because everyone is different. The philosophy behind Distilld is sharing and friendship (because drinking with friends is great, right?), and the main way that most of us learn about great drinks is from friends. With that in mind, Distilld features a 5-star rating system. The reason behind it is that most people won’t be able to really tell the difference between a 90-point or 91-point Whiskey (I know I can’t!), so bringing it down to 5 stars makes it easier to rate/understand. Stu has said that, should people want more in-depth reviews or content, Distilld will likely be promoting content and reviews from industry experts!
Distilld is chock full of a ton of awesome features. Featuring over 6,000 whiskeys across over 500 distilleries (which can be searched in a robust database), loaded in a native app in order to provide a fast and intuitive user experience – this is the perfect app for any lover of whiskey. The app is also integrated with Foursquare/Swarm, which allows you to check in when you rate bottles, as well as displaying a nearby activity feed and more!
Even though Distilld has started as an app for people who love a good glass of whiskey (or Bourbon if you prefer), they’re doing a lot more than just offering an app. Every week they offer something new every day, and taken right from their blog, here’s what they offer:
Mondays: Distilld Updates from Stu on the Blog
Tuesdays (NEW): Whiskey Shots! – Send in your best whiskey photos from the weekend and we will feature them on our social media channels.
Wednesday: Distilld’s #WhiskeyWednesday Cocktails of the Week have been a huge hit! If you haven’t been seeing those, you’re missing out on some tasty drinks.
Thursday: Our weekly giveaways to say thanks to our followers. Two Death Star Ice Ball molds have gone out and we have new partnerships to announce soon!
On top of that, today (August 4th) they are kicking off their Bikes & Bourbon event, where members of the Distilld team will be riding motorcycles around Kentucky as they check out bourbon around the state! If you want to keep up with that, which will be running through August 8th – Follow the Distilld Blog, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube!
So, I’ve said a lot about this awesome app, which should be released on the Apple Store for iOS devices this week (pending Apple approval) – but I want to really touch on what this app does well. First off, the label scanner (seen above), is probably the fastest piece of recognition software I’ve ever seen. When we were hanging out at a whiskey bar during TechWeek, Stu pulled out the app and grabbed a bottle of bourbon, which the app recognized the label for in less than a second – so yeah, it’s lightning fast.
Distilld does everything that you’d expect a social drinking app to do, but enhances a lot of it by being lightweight and looking really great. The app has a very distinct look and feel to it, and the speed at which it moves will keep you from waiting for things to load. One of my favorite features that I look forward to using frequently is that if you don’t have wifi, the app still works, allowing you to check into drinks and rate them without having to worry about spotty signal or lack of wifi at a bar/restaurant. Once you’re reconnected to the internet, it will upload your notes/rating/checkin!
So if you’re a Bourbon/whiskey drinker and want to show off your collection, rate bottles, share with friends, or see what others are rating their drinks – Check out Distilld! They’re going through the approval process on the App store, so it will be coming to iOS first, then an Android version will be released as well! Want to follow their news and events? Check the links below!