Whisky Fringe Tasting Tracker

Each year the Royal Mile Whiskies Whisky Fringe showcases the wares of the whisky industry in the picturesque settings of Mansfield Traquair. For £20, you have four hours in which to wander round 30 or so stands sampling any of the ~250 whiskies and ~30 rums on offer.

Upon entry you get three things – a printed programme booklet, a biro and a tasting glass. I’ve tended in the past to try to take notes in the booklet, but it requires an unusual manoeuvre of trying to hold the tasting glass and booklet in one hand while scrawling (with less success the later in the day you are) with the other.

So on Thursday night I threw together a quick mobile-friendly website for myself and a few friends to use to track which whiskies we taste on the day and which we particularly like or dislike.

Screenshot of the Whisky Fringe Tasting Tracker UI

The interface is as simple as possible to allow one-handed operation on a phone – phone in one hand, sampling glass in the other. The list of whiskies is presented without much fanfare with a alphabetical jump-list at the top for navigation. Users can say that they either liked, disliked or simply tasted a given whisky which is recorded in a MySql database along with a timestamp such that we can piece together the events of the day after the fact.

It remains to be seen whether it’ll hold up for the day (having effectively had to teach myself PHP in the space of a night for this one, it’s probably not the most robust implementation I’ve ever been involved in)…

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