Wine lovers petrified at risking their prized plonk to the mercy of a long hot summer can breathe and imbibe easy thanks to some clever wine tech out of Brisbane.
WineMinder is an app that tracks the ageing process of wine and recommends the best time to crack it open for a tipple all based on the temperature and vintage of the product – and there’s no cellar or wine fridge required.
Co-founders Sam Sheehan (pictured) and Tim MacTaggart came up with the idea when they stumbled upon research that revealed storing wine at the perfect temperature didn’t always correlate with the best results for consumption.
“My family had kept a bottle of wine from my birth for my 21st birthday and when we went to drink it, it had turned. So it got me thinking: when would have been the optimal time to drink it?” Sam says.
Sam and Tim then started looking into wine articles in relation to storage and came across an Australian research paper.
“The research confirmed that the optimal time to drink wine didn’t always correlate with or rely on the temperature the wine was kept,” Sam says.
“From this, we broke down the research and contracted mathematicians to develop an algorithm which accurately maps the aging process based on the conditions it’s stored in.”
WineMinder comes with a temperature and conditions gauge that is kept with the wine and constantly records data, while the app catalogues the bottles and notifies the owner when the wine is ready to drink.
It’s a little booze beacon, a cab sav siren. Finally, wine o’clock has an actual tangible time.
“The app gives consumers the ability to manage their collections and pinpoint the best time to drink based on storage conditions,” Sam says.
“So whether they have a temp controlled cellar or it is kept in a cupboard, the WineMinder algorithm can map the optimum time.”
While Sam and Tim have a background in startups and business, the product development was not without challenges.
“As we are working with hardware, issues around manufacturing and quality took a lot of our time in the development phase,” Sam says.
“We also realised we would have to change the misconceived idea that wines must be stored at the perfect temperature for them to reach their best, which we now know is incorrect.”
Sam and Tim have just launched the product on KickStarter for their first official funding round, hoping to secure $40,000 for future product development.
Find out more and pledge your support here.