How To Choose a Wine Fridge for Your Home

Ian Mutuli
Updated on

Are you a wine enthusiast? Can you tell the difference between a zinfandel and a pinot noir? Then it’s time to get yourself a wine cooler. In this article, we’ll help you buy the perfect wine cooler for your wine collection. 

What are wine coolers?

Wine coolers are fridges specifically designed to keep your wine at the ideal serving temperature. 

If you’re a wine enthusiast that loves to buy and try a variety of different wines, then what is better than experiencing them all at their very best? Storing wines and serving them is considered an art. It might take a while to master, but it is definitely worth it!

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However, if you just like to drink whatever, whenever, then the wine cooler is not really for you.

Key Considerations for Choosing a Wine Fridge

I want you to ignore your budget for a moment and ask yourself these three questions: 

1. How much wine do you want to store? 

This question will help is vital in identifying the bottle capacity you’re looking for. If you’re aiming to build a wine collection, then you’ll probably need something with 30-50% more storage capacity than the number of wine bottle you currently own. It’s better have space and not use it than need space and not have it. However, if you’re someone who doesn’t collect bottles and generally has a high bottle turnover, then storage capacity isn’t really something you need to concern yourself with.

2. Where will you put your wine cooler?

The location of your wine cooler will determine the type you choose, so it’s important to decide this in advance. I will go over this later in the article, but in summary:

  • Integrated wine coolers – can be fully integrated into kitchen cabinetry, the most neat solution.

  • Built-in wine coolers – partially integrated, but with a vent at the front. Cheaper and easier to install than integrated.

  • Freestanding wine coolers – designed to be located with space either side, not to be integrated. 

3. Single or dual-temperature zones?

According to Expert Wine Storage, if you’re generally more into red or white wine, then you should go for the single temperature zone type (as the same type uses the same temperature). 

But if you want to have some bottles at the ideal serving temperature and some at storage temperature, or you want to be able to served properly chilled red and white wine, then you’ll need to get a dual or triple temperature zone module.

Types of Wine Coolers 

Wine cooler can come in three types: Built-in, integrated or freestanding. Depending on where you’ll keep your cooler and how much storage space you need will be the key factor in determining the type you need.

The width of wine coolers ranges from 15 to 70 cm. But the majority of models are typically 60 cm wide.

1. Freestanding Wine Coolers

The freestanding wine coolers are the most common and cheapest wine coolers available on the market. They can be placed anywhere in your house. Since they practically have no requirements, you can one with bigger dimensions than the built-in models, which means you can store up to 150 bottles!

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If decide on the freestanding wine cooler, try to keep it in a room where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate a lot. So, avoid placing it in a garage.

2. Built-in Wine Coolers

Built-in wine coolers give your kitchen a more elegant look.  Built-in wine coolers are more expensive than the freestanding models. They come in fixed dimensions, so the number of bottles you can store in them are generally lower than freestanding models. So, if you’ve got your eyes set on building a wine collection, then this type is not for you.

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3. Integrated Wine Coolers

These coolers are harder to install since they are fitted into a unit, so you might need to refurbish your kitchen just to accommodate one. In addition, they don’t have a large bottle capacity, so they won’t be suitable if you’re building a wine collection.

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4. Countertop Wine Coolers

If you have limited space, then I’d recommend getting a countertop wine cooler. It holds from 6 to 8 bottles, but it’ll do the trick. It’s the same as a freestanding fridge, but with a smaller capacity.

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We hope you enjoyed this article on how to choose a wine fridge. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments below.

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.