Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Corkage Fee Mobile App

Two years ago our government finally and legally allowed BYOB to come to British Columbia and I quickly created this blog to list as many restaurants as possible that allowed corkage. Some restaurants embraced the concept others wanted no part of it, but corkage is here to stay and now there is a mobile app that makes navigating corkage friendly restaurants a lot easier than reading this blog both here in Vancouver and if travelling in the United States.

CorkageFee originally launched stateside and now has growing Canadian content. The restaurant information is FourSquare populated and corkage fees and ratings are verified by crowd sourcing.  I would highly recommend that restaurants check and update their corkage policy and pricing for accuracy.

The free app  allows users to find and view restaurants using filters for location, distance, corkage prices, user ratings and tips. A one tap call button is perfect for making reservations. There is integration with  Uber (not available in Vancouver yet again) along with driving instructions; both these features are great when travelling to unfamiliar cities or neighbourhoods. User ratings are based on a five-point info-graphic along with basic wine service questions.

User Uploaded Lists
Driving Instructions
I found the app easy to navigate and now needs to be up to date with more content to be of greater use. Sadly a user cannot add a restaurant that offers corkage so you may find yourself in the  dark when using the app while on the road. According to the developer; a user added listing is in the works. You can upload photos of a wine list although I find this limiting based on the quality of the image taken by the user. A possible future update could include image capture that can be scanned for wine recommendations, tasting notes, or ratings.  

Due to restaurant list population by FourSquare you will come across restaurants that do not have alcohol licences i.e take out pizza, sushi, and kebab establishments so a bit of foresight is required.  A web link to restaurant websites would be a great future feature allowing the user to see what wines are currently listed and avoid the cardinal rule of never bringing a bottle of wine that is already on the wine list. As a user, I would like to see other users add extra content in the tip section,  i.e sommelier's name or e mail address or a special menu item to consider trying. You can add up to one hundred characters of tip information. 


The app also allows you to find wine shops; which I found were missing a number of options for Vancouver, possibly due to FourSquare sourcing or that a fee is charged for shops to be listed.  An advertised shop  can have an email, web link, and product placement forefront of the competition in the apps search engine. 

I'm looking forward to using the app at home and away and I recommend it for any of my blog followers. The current release works fine on both my IPhone 4S and 6. The app can be downloaded at the itunes or Android Store.

3 comments:

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  2. Corkage mobile app and all of the features begins here with the great experience that also have been verified through crowd sourcing writing content in Canadian restaurant.

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  3. Fee at Abattoir has increased to $30.

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