Review: Appetites, by Clear-Media (universal binary)
, by Clear-Media (universal binary)
• Easy to follow recipes, from a range of chefs
• Includes video tutorial to guide the less kitchen-inclined
• Additional recipes are too expensive and can’t preview the packs!
• No ability to sort by meal or ingredients
• No general “cooking classes”
Appetites is a unique cooking app that aims to guide you through the process of making interesting and fun food items. The catch with this app is that a series of bloggers guide you through the cooking process using in-app videos while you are looking at the recipes. This is a different approach to cooking – you get to watch somebody do something exactly as you are trying to figure it out (such as chopping up the ginger for an aqua fresca). You can scroll through the different stages of a recipe as quickly or slowly as you like, so you aren’t stuck simply watching a half-hour video.
The app comes with 30 built in recipes, guided by 9 different chefs. All images on the chefs move, so if it fun to watch them vie for your attention when scrolling through the list. You can tap on a chef, and get a list of the recipes that chef can help you with, or you can tap on the list of “classes” (which are really just the recipes – each “class” is a class to show you how to cook the specific recipe.
I would have liked to see some sort of general cooking classes that could be used to describe useful tips, tricks, or techniques in the kitchen, but I guess those are for another app.
The recipes themselves are pretty straightforward – nothing really that you would want to serve to impress a foreign dignitary. Recipes include things like Apple hand pies, avocado spring rolls, chocolate chip pecan pie, and maple bacon pancakes.
There are additional recipes that you can either buy individually or buy various “packs”. Unfortunately, finding those recipes is difficult. There is no “add-on pack” button, and scrolling through the recipes only shows you what you already have. The only way to find the additional recipes is by scrolling through each recipe that a chef offers. You can buy them individually for $0.99 each, or buy a “pack” for $1.99. Unfortunately, the app doesn’t tell you what other recipes are included in the pack! This is extremely poor design, and I would encourage people not to buy any recipe packs until it improves.
The step by step instructions are very clear, once you get start with the cooking. While I was looking at the app on my iPhone, it is a universal binary, and so you could easily have this on an iPad in the kitchen while you are cooking. The fact that there is audio means you don’t have to be watching every minute when using the app as well.
All in all, I found this a fun, entertaining cooking app that seems pretty well designed for the most part. I found the options for purchasing additional recipes lacking, and the additional recipes themselves cost too much money. But the included 30 recipes, with step by step video instructions from 9 different chefs (each with their own personality) makes the app lots of fun. Until they improve the in-app purchases, however, I have to limit my recommendations. For $4.99, the app isn’t a cheap one, but if you enjoy cooking at want to feel like you have a chef guiding you along in the kitchen, this app might be a good purchase for you. Three and a half out of five stars.
* = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
*** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
**** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.
Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating. Please comment on these reviews. If you own the app, tell me what your opinion is. If the review prompted you to buy (or not buy) the app, let me know why. If you want more information about the app, go ahead and ask.
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