If you are looking for a wine cooler, there is a sea of options out there and the Wine Enthusiast 18-Bottle Touchscreen Wine Cooler is the best choice if you want your pick to tick all the boxes. If you are looking for a wine cooler, you will also quickly learn that you need to decide just how serious you are about your wines and how much you are willing to spend on the purchase. The Wine Enthusiast not only has a sleek and modern design, it is also very reasonably priced for everything it has to offer. This dual zone cooler will allow you to make sure that your wine bottles are stored and chilled in just the right conditions.
An excellent option for someone who is willing to spend more on their wine cooler is the NewAir AWR-460DB 46 Bottle Built in Dual Zone Compressor Wine Cooler . This elegant wine cooler fits up to 46 bottles and as a built-in model, will blend into your space beautifully. If the look of your wine cooler is as important to you as its functionality and features, this is the option to go for as this dual zone EdgeStar cooler will not only look great, it will also do and excellent job. This pick is perfect for someone who is ready to invest in a larger, more expensive high quality wine cooler for their growing wine collection.
If you are not ready to spend a lot on a wine cooler just yet, the Avanti 12 Bottle Thermoelectric Countertop Wine Cooler is a brilliant budget pick. This single zone wine cooler is great for someone who would like to see whether they will use the wine cooler enough to invest in a more advanced and spacious model in the future or for someone who is beginning to collect wines but the collection does not call for a larger unit just yet. The compact design will fit brilliantly on countertops and in small spaces so you can easily integrate it into your room.
Whichever option you think will suit your needs best, a wine cooler is definitely an appliance to purchase if you like to enjoy wine regularly, and of course responsibly.
How should I serve wine?
The way a wine is served can affect practically every aspect of the experience. There are a few very simple serving rules to follow that will help you make sure you are enjoying the wine exactly how it was meant to be enjoyed. This is where your wine cooler can help you by preparing the bottles to the temperature they are meant to be enjoyed at.
A sparkling wine, rose or dry white wine should be served at a temperature between 5 ‘ 10 degrees Celsius, which is between 40 ‘ 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
A light red or a full-bodied white should be served at a temperature between 10 ‘ 15 degrees Celsius, which is between 50 ‘ 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
And finally, a full-bodied red wine should be served at a temperature between 15 ‘ 18 degrees Celsius, which is between 60 ‘ 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
As you can see these perfect serving temperatures vary quite drastically. This is because these temperatures ensure that the flavours and aromas are at their best for each type of wine. If you serve your wine at an incorrect temperature, it will taste completely different. However, according to this article by Vintec Club, the perfect serving temperatures vary from wine to wine, not only from white to red, so make sure that you prepare your bottles on time to save yourself some last minute complications.
What is the best way to store wine?
Storing wine might sound much more complicated than it actually is. All you need to do is make sure that you store it in a cool, dark place that is humid enough.
Aspects such as the perfect storing temperature, light exposure and humidity are crucial if you want to experience and taste all the notes your wine has to offer, let alone make sure that your wine does not worsen or even spoil because of how you have stored your bottles. There are some simple storing conditions to make sure you follow once you have bought your wine.
When it comes to the perfect storing temperature, the closest temperature to perfect is 12.5 degrees Celsius or 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This is not an exact science, but as long as the temperature is kept below 18 degrees Celsius or 65 degrees Fahrenheit and above 7 degrees Celsius or 45 Fahrenheit, the wine should remain unharmed and ageing safely. The temperature should be constant without much rising and falling.
Another very important aspect to keep in mind when storing your wine is light exposure. It is very important to keep your wine in a dark place as direct sunlight can cause damage to the wine.
The best positioning of the bottles is to keep them horizontal so that the wine keeps the cork wet and it does not dry out. If the cork gets too dry, it can shrink and allow oxygen to get through to the wine, which can cause oxidation and result in the wine spoiling.
Something to also keep in mind when storing your wine is the humidity of the place. The perfect percentage is between 55 and 75 percent. If your storage place is not humid enough, just like with storing the bottles in the incorrect position, low humidity can cause the corks to shrink and allow some oxygen to get to the wine causing it to oxidize and spoil. But it is also important to make sure that your storage space is not too humid as too much humidity, just like too little of it, can affect the cork and mold it. However, according to this article by Wine Spectator, humidity is not as crucial as some might believe and will only affect your wine if you are storing it in extremely humid or extremely dry conditions.
As you can see, if you wish to store wine correctly, you just need to follow a few simple yet important steps.
What is the difference between a singe zone and dual zone wine cooler?
When you are looking for a wine cooler, it is important to know what exactly you would like to use it for. Would you like to have it as a storage space and keep the temperature at the perfect 12.5 degrees Celsius or 55 degrees Fahrenheit and 70 percent humidity? Or would you like to use your wine cooler as a serving preparation station? It is important to decide between the two as that might also help you pick between a single zone wine cooler and a dual zone wine cooler.
As the name suggests, a single zone wine cooler has the same temperature distributed throughout the unit. This option is perfect if you are planning to use your wine cooler as a storage space as all wines require the same storing conditions, unlike their serving conditions that vary quite drastically. A single zone wine cooler can be a great choice if you do not have a suitable wine storing space such as a basement. Along with a great storage option, a single zone wine cooler is perfect if you only enjoy one type of wine. Your wine can be constantly chilled at its perfect serving temperature without having to worry about additionally chilling it before serving.
Unlike a single zone wine cooler, a dual zone wine cooler has two different temperatures throughout the unit. The temperatures can be controlled separately which allows you more options. You can still use the wine cooler only as a storage space, but you also have the option to have some bottles ready for serving in the same wine cooler. If you are not planning to store your wine in the wine cooler, you can chill all types of wine in the same wine cooler, no matter what the perfect serving temperature.
Top Pick: Slimline Wine Enthusiast
While a wine cooler is a purchase that can be both exciting and intimidating, there are some requirements to look for in your pick and our top pick, which is the Wine Enthusiast 18 Bottle Slimline Wine Refrigerator, ticks all of the boxes with excellent features and a sleek, compact design. When looking for a wine cooler, you need to decide what exactly you would like your pick to do. Do you wish to use it mainly for storage or mostly for chilling bottles to their serving temperature? Or do you perhaps want your wine cooler to do everything and have an all-in-one unit? As soon as you decide exactly what you need, the variety and abundance of options will not be as intimidating and you will be able to find a wine cooler that is perfect for you.
Our top pick, the Wine Enthusiast, is a dual zone cooler. The top level holds ten bottles with adjustable temperatures ranging from 12-19 degrees Celsius or 54-66 degrees Fahrenheit and the bottom level holds eight bottles with adjustable temperatures ranging from 8-19 degrees Celsius or 46-66 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature range is perfect for both storing and chilling both red and white wines. This thermoelectric Wine Enthusiast is quiet and energy efficient, the interior is lit by LED lighting so you can see everything clearly and the temperature regulating touchscreen control buttons are located on the outside for ease of use.
This Wine Enthusiast’s compact design can easily fit into small spaces and with the wine cooler’s shelves being removable, you will be able to fit in most standard wine bottle sizes or simply remove some of the shelves if you need to chill or store a larger bottle. This wine cooler is a top pick for someone looking for a quiet and reliable dual zone cooler that is easy to work with. This Wine Enthusiast does not take up too much space and does not break the bank, the 18 bottle capacity of this wine cooler is perfectly suited for a novice collector or for someone who loves to entertain regularly.
Flaws but not Dealbreakers
The Wine Enthusiast 18 bottle wine cooler is perfect for a small kitchen or a tight space that you would not be able to fit other 18 bottle capacity wine coolers in, so beware that the shelves will only come out if the door is all the way open as the compact design of the unit requires a little more attention to how you are putting in or taking out the bottles. The slimline design definitely makes up for the fact that you need to be a little more attentive with how you handle this wine cooler.
Also, it is important to remember that even though this Wine Enthusiast wine cooler can fit into very small spaces, you still need to keep some room in the back and on the sides for it not to overheat. The wine cooler itself does not produce a lot of heat, but it is always best to allow the back of it to breathe, so remember to leave a few inches or centimeters on all sides of the wine cooler.
The Runner-up: NewAir AWR-460DB 46 Bottle Built in Dual Zone Compressor Wine Cooler
If you are ready to invest in a wine cooler that will have a larger capacity and more features and will also fit seamlessly into your kitchen, look no further than the NewAir AWR-460DB. This elegant unit is definitely an investment that will not disappoint. This NewAir model offers dual zone cooling that can go all the way down to 4.5 degrees Celsius or 40 degrees Fahrenheit and all the way up to 19 degrees Celsius or 66 degrees Fahrenheit which makes this wine cooler great for both cooling and storing your wines.
With this pricier runner-up pick comes a more sophisticated design. The NewAir AWR-460DB has a front venting design that makes it possible to build it into your interior. If you choose to use this wine cooler as a built-in unit, it will blend into your space seamlessly and is perfect if your kitchen has mostly built in appliances. Of course, if you would rather have a free standing wine cooler, you also have the option to not build the unit in and place it anywhere in your chosen space.
The NewAir AWR-460DB wine cooler has 5 sliding wooden shelves that are lit by LED lights for easy access. The easy to use temperature control buttons are located on the inside of the wine cooler and if you wish you can also lock the unit to keep your wine bottles safe. The unit is quiet, elegant and does its job perfectly so it is definitely worth considering if you are looking to invest in a more expensive wine cooler that will be worth every penny.
Budget Pick: Avanti EWC1201
Avanti 12 Bottle Thermoelectric Countertop Wine Cooler
If you are not yet ready to pay large amounts of money on a wine cooler and are looking for a simple unit that will either chill one type of wine or be great for storage, the Avanti EWC1201 is an excellent budget pick. This single zone wine cooler is a compact and practical choice if you are only starting out on your wine collecting voyage or if you would like to prepare and enjoy one type of wine. The layout of the 12 bottles can be adjusted to your needs as the design allows 4 standing wine bottles for larger, less standard sized bottles. The temperature range of this Avanti depends on what conditions you have the wine cooler in as the surrounding temperature can affect the wine cooler’s performance, however, the temperature range for this unit goes as low as 8 degrees Celsius or 47 degrees Fahrenheit and as high as 18 degrees Celsius or 64 degrees Fahrenheit. To make sure that this wine cooler works as well as possible, allow it some space on all sides so the unit can vent and does not overheat. Thanks to its slim, long yet compact design, the Avanti can be placed both on countertops and on the floor for your ultimate convenience.
The clean and modern design will look great in your space and with its easy to use temperature control buttons, the Avanti is an excellent, practical pick for a great price.
Even though the Avanti EWC1201 is a rather small wine cooler, you really do not need space for any more bottles if you are not planning to start collecting. The Avanti fits 12 bottles of most sizes and will be enough to give you a taste of what a wine cooler can offer you and whether you would be willing to dive deeper into the world of wine collecting, storing and enjoying.
Best built-in wine cooler for a small space
If you are looking for a wine cooler that will be neatly hidden between your kitchen cupboards or will beautifully blend into your bar, then built-in wine coolers are for you. The main difference between built-in wine coolers and free standing ones is that built-in units have a front vent. The front vent means that the heat which the unit produces is channeled to the front instead of the back and will not make the wine cooler overheat. The front venting mechanism allows you to easily locate your wine cooler between your cupboards or other built-in appliances for a polished and modern look. Because of a more detailed and specific design, built-in wine coolers can be more expensive than free standing ones. Of course, the higher price often comes with a more pleasing look for those who are looking for a purer and streamlined room design.
However, if you do not have a standard sized space for your built-in unit, it might be a little tricky to find your perfect unit. This is where the Kalamera 15” Wine Cooler steps in and saves the day. This wine cooler is a great option for a tighter spot between your cupboards or if you would like to have a more compact unit built into your bar without the wine cooler taking over the rest of your bar area. Despite the surprisingly compact design, this Kalamera fits 30 standard sized bottles. The tasteful beach wood shelves add a classic look to the modern stainless steel design and the simple touchscreen controls make this single zone wine cooler a breeze to operate. This low vibration wine cooler operates quietly and efficiently.
Best countertop wine cooler for a small kitchen
It is not uncommon to feel that a wine cooler will clutter up your space if you already have very little of it, even if you think that you could definitely use one in your kitchen. Even with a narrow, free standing unit, it might be tricky to make room for a wine cooler unless you compromise on your own comfort. However, there are options out there for small, compact and very practical wine coolers that will allow you to store and chill your wines properly.
The best pick for a small unit is the Haier 6-Bottle Wine Cellar. This incredibly compact and modern single zone wine cooler will fit perfectly on a kitchen or bar countertop without you needing to clear a space on the floor. This small Haier model will help you prepare wine for dinner parties and always keep a perfectly chilled bottle at hand.
If the Haier is not available, another very compact and unique looking countertop wine cooler is the Nostalgia Electrics EWC008BLK. This wine cooler will fit in perfectly in any kitchen design on any countertop. This Nostalgia Electrics model is incredibly easy to set up and equally as easy to operate, all you need to do is take it out of the box and plug it in, it’s as simple as that.
With wine coolers, as with most kitchen appliances, when it is time to choose which one is right for you, there are still several potential winners even if you have the most specific requirements. It is always best to have options so you can then narrow them down to the wine cooler that is the one for you. Here are some wine coolers that could be tough competition for our top, runner-up and budget picks and that you may even find in wineries.
If you are looking for a freestanding single zone wine cooler that will not only do the job, but will also look good, then the NewAir AW-181E is worth a look. This easy to use and practical wine cooler is a great pick if you are looking for a reliable and simple option that will not compromise on quality despite the reasonable price.
For a freestanding dual zone wine cooler the Koldfront 18 Bottle Free Standing Dual Zone Wine Cooler is a potential pick. This wine cooler has a pleasing, yet compact design with elegant wooden shelves and a stainless steel exterior, a lock on the door and an easy to operate temperature control panel. Some reviewers have mentioned the fact that the unit is meant strictly for standard sized wine bottles, but if that does not concern you, this Koldfront wine cooler might be the one for you.
If you are leaning more towards a built-in wine cooler, another good single zone option is the EdgeStar 18 Bottle Built-In Wine Cooler. This slim and great looking unit offers stable storing and chilling temperatures for your bottles and an elegant look with wooden shelves and a stainless steel exterior.
If you are ready for a larger investment and are looking for a built-in dual zone wine cooler, the EdgeStar 36 Bottle Built-In Dual Zone French Door Wine Cooler is worth a look. The unit’s French doors give the wine cooler a sophisticated feel and the wine cooler also has an outside temperature control panel for quick and easy access. The interior is lit by a soothing and modern LED light so you can see your wine bottles clearly.
Wrapping it up
Most of us spend hours upon hours researching the right wine cooler. It is not easy, but definitely possible to find the one that will fit your needs and specifications perfectly. Simply start by answering a few basic questions, such as: how much are you willing to spend on your wine cooler, how would you like it to look and how many bottles would you like to store in it? Then you can move on to deciding whether you would like a single zone or dual zone wine cooler and whether you would like a freestanding or built-in unit. We have managed to find our top picks by taking into account aspects such as Amazon customer reviews and brand reputation. All it really takes is not getting intimidated by the sheer amount of products that are on the market.
If you want a reliable dual zone wine cooler that is suitable for both red and white, that will look great, work excellently and will not cost you a large sum of money, our top pick, the Wine Enthusiast is a great choice. The compact size and design of this wine cooler will not be too invasive yet it is spacious enough to hold 18 bottles. Taking the reasonable price into account along with the great customer reviews, the Wine Enthusiast is a clear winner.
If you are however someone who is looking for a more serious looking, more spacious wine cooler, our runner-up pick, the NewAir AWR-460DB, is the one for you. This beautifully designed built-in wine cooler will look great in your kitchen or bar area and will do a brilliant job. As a product that is on the pricier side, it will be an investment that you will not regret and will prove itself to be worth every penny.
If you are only beginning to enjoy your wines or if you are struggling to find any extra space in your home for a wine cooler, our budget pick, the Avanti EWC1201 is the one for you. This compact, single zone wine cooler is also an excellent choice if you mainly enjoy only one type of wine. Plenty of homes have a wine cooler, so if you are wondering what all the fuss is about, this Avanti is a great first buy to find out.
When it comes to deciding which wine cooler to go for, just remember that all it takes is a little bit of decision making and you will have the perfect one in your home in no time.
Jen Miller is a former electrical engineer and product specialist with more than 20 years of product design and testing experience. She has designed more than 200 products for Fortune 500 companies, in fields ranging from home appliances to sports gear and outdoor equipment. She founded Jen Reviews to share her knowledge and critical eye for what makes consumers tick, and adopts a strict no-BS approach to help the reader filter through the maze of products and marketing hype out there. She writes regularly and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and MindBodyGreen.