Evernote Food 2.0 wants to inspire meals, not just record them

Evernote launched its first food app a year ago, helping people capture the end product of a great meal, whether it was one they made or one they enjoyed at a restaurant. But that wasn’t enough for Evernote.

Evernote FoodNow the note-taking company is launching a revamped Evernote Food 2.0 iPhone app (s ios), along with a brand new iPad app, that aspires to be a one-stop shop for food. That means it will help people decide what to do for their upcoming meals by giving them thousands of recipe options and offering a local restaurant search tool. It’s a big step up for Evernote and puts it in competition with applications such as Yelp (s yelp) and Google (s goog) and food apps like Allrecipes and Foodspotting.

The core feature of the original app is still captured in a My Meals tab, that allows users to take pictures, add captures and tags to remember previous meals. But the big changes are on the discovery side. Now, a user can access a Restaurants tab powered by Foursquare that lets them find nearby restaurants and save them to a list. You can search for specific restaurants to get business information or just enter a category like “Mexican” or “Sushi.” There’s also a My Meals library which remembers every saved meal. It’s a great way to look back at where you’ve gone and see what particular dishes you had at each place.

A new Explore Recipes tab driven by Punchfork gives users access to thousands of recipes from blogs and different online publications. You can browse a list of suggested recipes or search for something specific such as a dish, ingredient or a particular blog. Evernote Food uses an internal browser to call up each recipe page so the original publisher gets the traffic. Users can just clip the recipe and save it to their Evernote account. When they head out to the store, everything is synced on the iPhone.

Evernote Food

The saved recipes show up in the My Cookbook tab, which serves as a library of clipped recipes. Evernote can also add recipes from an Evernote note by analyzing it and recognizing it as a recipe. So if you want to create your own recipe, Evernote Food can organize it easily into your library.

When Evernote Food first debuted, I framed it as a way for Evernote to help organize a user’s past. But Evernote Food 2.0 is a lot more useful for food lovers and makes it something users will want to reach for on a regular basis, not just at the end of a good meal. It makes a lot of sense for Evernote to venture into discovery. Now, it’s not waiting for people to come up with their own meal ideas, it can inspire people to do that. And then it can capture all the memories, which just makes Evernote that much more important.