Wine Chillers & Coolers Buying Guide

Buying a bottle of good wine is only the first step in enjoying it. You have to store that wine correctly to protect your investment. Specialty appliances, like a wine chiller, give wine the stability and shelter it deserves so you can enjoy it long after you bring it home.

Types of Wine Chillers & Coolers

Types of Wine Chillers & Coolers

Thanks to the popularity of drinking wine and entertaining at home, the appliance category of wine chillers -- also known as wine coolers or wine refrigerators -- is growing. Now any home, big or small, can upgrade its wine storage with models designed to sit on the countertop, under a counter, or on its own in any room.

Countertop

This entry-level wine storage is compact and quiet but offers the fewest options and smallest capacity.

shop Countertop

Built-In

The most popular type of wine chiller, built-in models install under a counter in the space of a trash compactor or dishwasher, with bottom vents that exhaust to the front. Models offer a range of capacities and convenience features.

shop Built-In

Freestanding

Freestanding wine refrigerators are independent of cabinets and store 250 bottles or more. These models may require 2-3 inches of clearance on all sides for ventilation.

shop Freestanding

Product Features

Product Features

For convenience, security, and dependability, these features are standard on some models and optional on others, according to model size and cost. Most are enhancements designed to protect your wine investment.

Dual Temperature Zones

If you drink only red wine or only white wine, your storage needs are simple. However, if you wish to store both reds and whites in the same wine cooler, a single temperature is a risky compromise. The safest solution is two independently controlled temperature zones, preferably in separate compartments.

Digital Controls

A digital temperature display -- easy to set and view without opening the door -- keeps temperatures accurate and consistent. One drawback: Digital controls may limit you to predetermined ranges, such as 40-65 degrees Fahrenheit.

Tinted Glass Doors

Because ultraviolet light is harmful to wines, look for tinted double-pane glass doors that block UV rays yet still let you see your prized collection.

Adjustable Shelves

Whether they're wood, metal, or plastic, all wine-chiller shelves store bottles on their sides so the corks are always wet. Most shelves hold standard 750-millileter bottles. Fixed racks let you stack bottles to store more; adjustable or removable racks make it easy to accommodate larger champagne bottles or to slide out a shelf to view or insert bottles.

Other Features

Integrated locks protect wine against removal by children or burglars. Adjustable interior LED lighting displays your collection and illuminates labels without damage from ultraviolet or incandescent light. Reversible hinges let you change the direction your door opens.

Purchase Considerations

Purchase Considerations

As with any appliance, a little research will ensure you find the wine refrigerator that best fits your needs. Choosing the right type, size, and location are smart steps to buying a model that is practical for your home and lifestyle. And remember that cost has two components: the purchase price and the operating expense.

Capacity

Wine refrigerators store as few as six to more than 200 bottles. Even if your collection is small right now, anticipate how it could grow in a few years. In addition, bottle capacity is related to the type of racks you choose, as certain rack options offer greater capacity than others. Consider buying a wine chiller that holds at least four or five more bottles than you usually have so that you can take advantage of sales or vineyard trips.

Energy Use

The federal Energy Star program rates food refrigerators but not wine chillers. Based on your capacity and temperature setting, efficient models cost about $10 per year to operate at an average of 10.8 cents per kilowatt-hour. Thermoelectric wine coolers, which do not contain compressors, can be more efficient than standard electric units.

Location

Where you plan to install your wine chiller affects the type you buy, and vice versa. Operating noise can be distracting if you choose a location in the dining room or family room. Kitchens, pantries, garages, and basements can all suffer from temperature swings that make the appliance work harder to maintain steady cooling.

Styling

Look for attractive styling if you want to show off your wine chiller and its contents. If you choose a built-in model, the door's finish will count the most. Consider whether doors of glass, stainless steel, or wood complement your setting before making your final choice. Sleek, hidden handles or chunky industrial pulls also contribute to the overall design.

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Grohe
$1,899.00 $1041.39

Grohe Ondus Champagne Bucket Fusing simplicity with emotion, Grohe Ondus® unites perfect design with the most advanced digital tec...hnology. Following the Grohe Sensual Minimalism philosophy, the collection offers a range of manually and digitally... read more

Skybar
$39.95 $13.99

On-the-go wine or champagne carrier reduces the bottle's exposure to UV light and maintains its temperature during transportation ...Size: Small. Color: Orange/Red/Green/Light. Gender: Unisex. Age Group: Adult. read more

Ralph Lauren
$495.00 $346.50

A sleek addition to any bar collection, this generously sized champagne bucket is crafted from gleaming silver-plated brass. 128 o...z. capacity 8"W X 9"H X 8"D Silver-plated brass Spot clean Imported. Gifts - Barware. Ralph Lauren. read more

Soiree
$25.00 $15.99

Share a chilled glass of wine anytime with Soirees Tempour Wine Chiller Set. Featuring two different sizes, this wine chiller set ...is designed to fit both short or tall bottles so you can be prepared for all occasions. Each rod is stainless steel and filled with food-grade freezer gel so you can easily place it in the freezer between uses. When the celebrations begin, simply slip the wine chillers in the bottle for easily chilling your wine, champagne, spirits, or even sake. With Soirees Tempour Wine Chiller Set, the drinks are ready when you are. Features: Tempour Wine Chiller rods 2 different lengths for short or tall bottles For chilling wine, champagne, spirits, or sake Each rod filled with food-grade freezer gel Refreezable stainless steel Click Here to Browse More Products by Soiree read more

Elegance
$98.99 $89.09

The eye-catching exteriors of our Elegance Collection are hand-hammered using traditional techniques that give each piece a unique... look. Overall, they add a warm, rustic ambiance to any bar or tabletop. Secure brass handles on bucket provide worry-free... read more

Cambridge Silversmith
$76.99 $69.29

Cambridge Silversmith barware is a fantastic addition to the home bar. The Cambridge Silversmiths Shiloh Galvenized and Rope Bever...age Tub is a great addition to your home bar and is the ideal way to serve thirsty party guests. It will blend iin well... read more

Old Dutch
$110.26 $99.23

Impress your guests with this antique embossed four-bottle wine chiller from Old Dutch. This modern wine chiller features an inter...ior compartment that holds ice and a decorative lid that keeps the cool temperature within the unit. The slightly flared... read more

Old Dutch
$26.99 $24.29

This double-walled wine chiller presents your Chardonnay at the proper temperature and prevents condensation from ruining your tab...letop, all while displaying stunning good looks. Double-walled construction helps your fine wine keep its chill, while the... read more

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