Wine is a living and breathing thing which evolves and improves over time. That is, of course, as long as it’s stored in suitable conditions. A wine refrigerator will ensure that your wine is protected from heat, allowing it to age properly.

The Four Enemies Of Wine

Caves were often used as wine cellars in the olden days. Today, a remnant of this knowledge remains in the French word for wine cellar: cave á vin. Therefor if we think about the environment inside a cave: cold, dark, still and slightly humid, we start to understand how to store wine optimally.

Below are the four biggest enemies of wine that can hinder its aging process:

  • Temperature

The ideal temperature for storing ALL wine is 55° F (12.7° C). The temperature must stay consistent. Wines stored in environments with fluctuating temperatures can easily turn bad.

  • Light

Having a dark cellar is necessary. UV rays can easily damage wine by penetrating the glass bottle.

  • Humidity

Corks, which are one of the key factors in protecting the wine, need a balanced humidity. A dry cork will crumble or allow air to enter the bottle, ruining the wine.

  • Vibration

Keeping your wine bottles still is essential in the storage of fine wines. Excessive vibration can generate unneeded heat that causes corks to shift.

First Things First

The first thing to decide is how many bottles you want to keep in your wine or beer chiller. They can typically hold anywhere from 6 to 24 bottles, but larger wine fridges are also available.

Next, think about the types of wine or beer you will be chilling – chardonnay or pinot noir? Ales or lagers? Different types of beverages may require storage at varying temperatures; a dual zone cooler will be an excellent option in this regard. This kind of wine fridge has two different temperature zones which allow you to keep an assortment of beverages at the perfect temperature.

If you are thinking about incorporating your new investment into your kitchen or bar design, search for an under counter fridge or built-in wine cooler to create an aesthetically pleasing design.

Will A Mini Bar Fridge Work For Me?

If you are storing beer, soda or other beverages, regular small fridges will work just fine; you can even store snacks in the fridge. However, it is not recommended to store wine in a mini fridge, as the temperature is much too cold and can affect the taste of your potentially excellent bottle of wine.

Which Wine Or Beer Refrigerator Is Best For Me?

There are many different styles, sizes, functions and features available, so be sure to look through our selection of the best wine and beer refrigerators below to see which unit suits your collection.

 

EdgeStar 36 Bottle Built-In Dual Zone French Door Wine Cooler

Edgestar built-in wine coolers are inspired to fit seamlessly into your lifestyle and suit your specific wine storage needs. This 24” design fits perfectly in standard under counter areas and allows you to store and display up to 36 bottles of your favourite wine. Loaded with features and an elegant French door design this wine refrigerator is a popular choice that will perfectly blend into any home décor.

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Highlights

  • Under counter or freestanding application
  • Dual temperature zones
  • Digital temperature control with blue LED displays
  • Temperature Range: 40 – 65º F for both zones
  • Door lock on each door
  • Black and Stainless Steel

Pros

Achieve better tasting and longer lasting wine by chilling your reds and whites at their optimal temperatures. Both sides have a wide temperature range of 40 – 65° F allowing you to choose the perfect storage temperature for your specific collection. The entire interior will be cooled to your desired temperature as air cooled technology uses powerful circulation fans to evenly distribute cool air eliminating hot spots and uneven cooling. A built-in carbon filter protects your wine by acting as a natural barrier against harmful odours.

The tinted glass door ensures that while your wine bottles are visible, the integrity of your wine is protected from the potential harm of harsh light and UV rays. The intuitive touch control and digital temperature display allow you to easily adjust and monitor the desired temperature based on your specific cooling needs.

The sleek stainless steel trim French doors, matching slide-out stainless steel trimmed shelves and soft LED interior lighting provide a timeless design to showcase your treasured collection. Whatever the setting, this unit is sure to spark conversation about its attractive and pleasing aesthetic. The shelf layout will allow you to achieve the maximum bottle capacity based on a ‘Typical Bordeaux’ bottle.

Front ventilation allows for flush-with-cabinetry or under counter installation while the fully finished black cabinet allows for freestanding use, as well.

Cons

The product comes with an expensive price tag. There is also no way to lock the control panel.

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Igloo Beverage Center And Wine Cooler

This cooler is loaded with 3 slide out, tempered glass shelves and 1 chrome wire rack. It’s perfect for bottles and cans of your favourite beverages! With the built in electronic temperature control, keep your drinks at the perfect temperature for that great party or gathering! This Igloo Cooler is frost free and easy to clean and use and is perfect for your pantry, office, dorm room or play room. 

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Highlights

  • Holds 4 wine bottles
  • Holds 110 cans
  • Chrome wine rack
  • Frameless flat panel glass door
  • Glass-touch electronic temperature controls
  • Environmentally friendly

Pros

The Igloo Beverage and Wine Center is designed to allow you to keep drinks cool and close at hand. With three glass shelves, it holds 110 cans or small plastic or glass bottles. The sturdy and durable chrome rack makes bottles easy to retrieve. The black wine cooler has a smooth and traditional look that will complement most spaces nicely.

It has electronic temperature controls that let you keep your drinks as cool as you prefer. With its sleek appearance, this Igloo wine cooler is a wonderful choice for almost any kitchen, bar area or den. The cooler has a convenient, interior LED light that makes it simple to locate your desired beverage.

The frameless flat panel glass door also ensures that it is easy to view what is inside. With its attractiveness and functionality, the Igloo Beverage Wine Center can make a thoughtful gift for a friend or loved one.

Cons

There have been complaints that the Igloo’s manufacturing material is subpar and not of a very high quality.

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Danby 36 Bottle Wine Cooler

If you’ve been known to throw a bottle of wine in the fridge after your guests arrive, the Danby DWC93BLSDB 36 Bottle Wine Cooler may be just the thing for you! With a temperature range of 43 – 57 º F, this wine cooler will keep your wine perfectly chilled and at the ready for any occasion. This beautifully designed, free-standing wine cooler holds up to 36 bottles of your favourite vino, which should make for a decent variety to please your guests… and yourself!

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Highlights

  • Blue LED interior lighting
  • Recessed pocket style handle
  • Black wire shelving
  • The tempered glass door
  • Smooth back design
  • Convenient reversible door swing for left or right hand opening

Pros

When you have several bottles of wine that need to be cooled, the most convenient and economical way to store them is in a fashionable free-standing wine cooler such as this model from Danby.

This spacious unit offers 3.3 cubic feet of cooling space which is designed to store up to 36 bottles of your favourite wines on attractive black wire shelving units. Your collection will also look quite impressive due to the blue LED interior lighting which beautifully showcases the bottles through the elegant tempered-glass door.

The bottles will always be at the temperature you prefer since the range of the wine cooler lies between 6°C and 14°C (43°F and 57°F).  There’s no incandescent bulb to interfere with the chilling process and the glass door is designed to protect your collection from potentially harmful ultraviolet rays.

This appliance features a stylish recessed pocket-style handle and the smooth back design allows it to be installed flush against a wall. The handy reversible door swing also enables you to open it from the left or right-hand side. This sturdy wine cooler also comes with a 12-month warranty on parts and labour with in-home service.

Cons

This refrigeration model uses an analogue temperature control knob which is a bit of a put off for people who prefer precise digital temp control. Also, is has no thermostat and the only way to monitor its temperature is using fridge thermometers.

The operation of the Danby 36 Bottle Freestanding Wine Cooler is relatively noisy. Some customers complain about its durability, claiming they experienced problems within the first few months. However those were well within the warranty period and received excellent service from Danby to restore their systems.

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NewAir AW-281E 28 Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler

Need a little extra storage space for your growing wine collection? The NewAir AW-281E 28 bottle thermoelectric wine cooler has everything you need. Whether you’re collection is advanced or new, you’ll appreciate this wine cooler’s large capacity interior, easy to use controls, and modern design. The freestanding, compact design fits in small spaces easily and requires only a 4 inch of clearance on all sides. This unit has all the bells and whistles and looks great in any setting!

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Highlights

  • 6 pull-out chrome racks
  • Attractive black and stainless steel design
  • Compressor-free cooling system
  • Digital display panel
  • Double-paned door
  • Holds 28 bottles of wine

Pros

This NewAir 28 bottle classic wine cooler features a large capacity design that’s fully adjustable for personalized use, soft illuminating LED lighting for optimal viewing and insulated, double-paned glass door to maintain proper temperature levels. In this wine cooler, you can store costly vintages or next day essentials. This model has everything you need to properly care for the wine collection you have.

Featuring 6 removable shelves you can customize the interior and take full advantage of its storage capabilities. Sliding shelves make selecting wine easy and the large capacity design is perfect for building a new collection or growing the one you already have! The handsome black and stainless steel finish add to the overall design and flatters any decor.

Cons

Because the shelves are closely spaced, capacity can vary depending on bottle size. Leaving the LED light on can cause temperature variations to occur.

The unit can be noisy for some. A good comparison is comparing the noise of a pedestal fan to that of the wine cooler.

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Culinair AW162S Thermoelectric 16-Bottle Wine Cooler, Silver/Black

This 16-bottle wine cooler is the perfect way to store and organize your wine. Keep wine at its optimal temperature with the adjustable thermostat. The state-of-the-art technology used in the manufacturing of this model means it is ultra-quiet, more reliable, and environmentally friendly (no CFCs). If you are looking for a simple, low-end wine cooler then the Culinair AW162S Thermoelectric 16-Bottle Wine Cooler is for you.

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Highlights

  • State-of-the-art thermoelectric technology
  • Glass door
  • Adjustable thermostat and temperature control
  • Internal fan
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Flush back design

Pros 

The Culinair Thermoelectric 16-Bottle Wine Cooler uses state-of-the-art technology to deliver quiet, vibration-free operation (no CFCs). The state-of-the-art thermoelectric refrigeration technology eliminates the need for a compressor, so it can reduce the internal temperature up to 30 degrees less than the ambient temperature.

It features an adjustable temperature controller to keep your wine at the correct temperature at all times. The wine cooler has adjustable shelves with a glass door for displaying your best bottles of wine. The flush back design coupled with the adjustable feet makes sure vibrations don’t disturb bottle sediment.

Our kitchen appliances have been designed with your family in mind. Simple to operate and gracefully stylish, each Culinair product is made to complement any home.

Cons

The interior light, one of the most important features in terms of aesthetics is lacking in this wine cooler. However this is one of the fringe items that had to be foregone to push the cost that low.

It does not have a temperature display. Again, the low cost of this unit demands that certain compromises are made to the design.

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The Bottom Line

There are a number of factors that will go into selecting the right wine refrigerator for all of your needs. These will include size, bottle capacity, volume, temperature zones, cooling components, length of anticipated storage time and shelf life of the unit.

The better the wines that are in your collection, the longer you are probably going to age them. The only way wines reach their full potential is when stored properly protected from all of the enemies of wine.

But even the smallest collection deserves to be kept at the right serving temperature ensuring that each bottle you open is as enjoyable as it should be. After all, aren’t you drinking wine in the first place for enjoyment?

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