Written by James Galea Published on 10 October 2017
Wine Coolers are one of the most elegant kitchen appliances, so make sure to select the right one. But again, I would say when it comes to wine cooler; you just gets what you pay for, I digress.
Wine chillers aren’t designed to age wine or warm them in cool environments as one would assume. They chill your wine and preserve it in the right conditions so that it is always ready to be served. Most models can be adjusted to chill wines to 45-65 degrees Fahrenheit, but dual zone coolers maintain two cooling zones. Aside from temperature zones, there are several other factors that one has to consider when shopping for a wine fridge.
This post reviews the best wine coolers on the market right now, and tells you how to choose a wine fridge that suits your needs.
For those who are short on time, here is a quick list for best wine coolers-
Haier HVTEC06ABS Wine and Beverage Center
Dual zone and thermoelectric cooling
Ivation IV-FWCT121B 12-Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler
Polyurethane foam insulation and thermoelectric cooling
NewAir AWR-290DB Compact 29-Bottle wine cooler
Built-in or Freestanding
Dual zone technology
KoldFront TWR187ESS Free Standing Dual Zone Wine Cooler
Freestanding dual zone cooler
Kalamera 15” 30-Bottle Built-in Wine Cooler
Built-in or Freestanding
Built-in cooler with elegant design
Whynter WC-201TD 20-Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler
Sleek countertop cooler with thermoelectric cooling
Avanti EWC1201 12-Bottle Counter Top Wine Cooler
Compact and lightweight
Edgestar CRW1661SZ 332-Dual Bottle Wine Cellar
High bottle capacity
Wine Enthusiast 272 03 18 05 18-Bottle Dual Zone Wine Cooler
Dual zone technology
Westinghouse WWT080MB Thermal Electric 8-Bottle Wine Cellar
Mini fridge with thermoelectric system
How much does a wine cooler costs?
Cost of a wine fridge is dependent on the capacity of the wine cooler. For instance, a wine fridge with 50 bottles capacity could cost you around between $200-800. However, if you have more than 100 bottles, then it would cost you $1000 or more depending upon the features, size and brand of the refrigerator. Basically, its about the number of bottles. More the capacity, more would be the price (provided you are going for a good brand). Here are few of the wine coolers on amazon store to get you an idea about the wine fridge pricing.
Unbiased review for each of the selected wine cooler listed above-
Haier HVTEC06ABS Wine and Beverage Center- Best Undercounter Wine Cooler
18 years old- Haier- is a leading manufacturer of home appliances ranging from air conditioners to compact refrigerators.
The Haier HVTEC06ABS is a countertop wine cooler with a six-bottle capacity and a thermoelectric cooling system.You can also grab this model in 8, 12 and 16 bottles model.
Cooling system creates minimal vibrations and noise, thus preventing your wine from bubbles. It offers dual zone temperature control, with the upper zone ranging from 54-degrees to 66-degrees and the lower zone ranging from 46-degrees to 66-degrees. This is a great integration, especially for the given capacity of 6 bottles.
Soft interior lighting makes it easy to take out or put-in the wine. Combined with the black trim, the interior lighting gives this unit a sleek look. The digital thermostat can be adjusted using the blue LCD display controls. Another feature you will love about this portable wine chiller is the smoked glass thermopane door that has a black trim and recessed handle. Shelves are removable and made of chrome to make the wiring sturdy.
I would say this one if perfect for those who drink wine occasionally (or rarely) and looking for a wine fridge to store 3-5 bottles. However, if you are a wine lover like me, this might not be your best choice.
- Uses thermoelectric cooling system and manual defrost
- Lightweight and sturdy design
- Dual zone temperature control
- Has two full-width chrome wire pull-out shelves
- Only has a capacity of 6 bottles
Ivation IV-FWCT121B 12-Bottle Thermoelectric Slim Wine Cooler
Ranked as a bestseller on Amazon, it is easy to understand why the Ivation IV-FWCT121B would be on our list for finest wine coolers. It provides short and long-term protection for your red and white wine.
This slim wine fridge comes with an efficient thermoelectric cooling system, which is preferred for its ability to produce minimal vibration and operate quietly. Like the model reviewed above, it has a tempered smoked glass door that showcases your collection and protects it from harmful light exposure.
One thing I noticed in this model is the light on temperature button. It's not too bold, but just bolder than other models in our list. So, you might not like this wine chiller if you live in a small apartment.
This unit creates a consistent, stable environment by allowing you to customize the temperature. You can choose from a range of 50-degrees to 64-degrees to bring out the full flavor and true characteristics of your wines.
It is closed with thermopane doors, and the interior is insulated with heavy polyurethane foam to ensure that the cork doesn’t dry out. The sleek design with exterior digital touch controls will blend nicely with almost any décor.
- Insulated with polyurethane foam to ensure an odor-free environment
- Comes with tempered smoked thermopane doors
- Allows your wine collection to age consistently
- Doesn’t produce any vibration or noise due to thermoelectric cooling
- Needs yearly checkup
NewAir wine chiller- AWR-290DB- Best Undercounter Wine Cooler
Red wines and white wines require varying temperature conditions to stay preserved, but this doesn’t mean that you have to purchase two different wine coolers. NewAir is a brand that understands that and fills this market gap with their range of dual zone wine coolers.
NewAir AWR-290DB is a perfect wine chiller designed to store different size of wine bottles.
The AWR-290B is a compact wine cooler with a 29-bottle capacity from NewAir. It uses a compressor cooling system that produces minimal vibrations and preserves the integrity of your collection. The unit also features dual zone technology, where the upper zone for the whites has a temperature range of 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit while the lower zone for the reds has a temperature range of 50-66 degrees Fahrenheit.
It has enough room for 29 bottles, and its space-saving design will fit with almost any decor. The reverse swing door is a nice addition that suits the layout of the room and makes it easy to access your wines.
The interior of the cooler has three beech wood shelves that slide out. You will be glad to know that you can reconfigure the interior to hold different size bottles and the soft blue lighting helps you read the labels easily. The tempered glass window is tinted for added protection, and there is a smart locking mechanism to keep the refrigerator door tightly shut.
If you were looking for a good quality undercounter wine chiller; well look no more, AWR-290B is your go.
- Dual zone technology for storing reds and whites
- Incorporates a compact design that fits in your home perfectly
- Ultimate UV protection for your wines
- Requires a tight squeeze to fit the 29-bottle capacity
- Not designed for oversized wine bottles
KoldFront TWR187ESS- Best Freestanding Dual Zone Wine chiller
The KoldFront wine fridge is a freestanding, dual zone cooler with a stainless steel tempered glass door and elegant housing.
This unit boasts dual-zone operation, allowing you to store a variety of whites and reds for a long time. The upper zone has a range of 54-degree to 66-degrees while the lower zone ranges from 46-degrees to 66-degrees.
You can control both of these zones independently with a touch-sensitive control panel showing different temperature zones.
The interior of this unit has removable wooden shelves that give it an added touch of elegance and make it easy to organize. You can reconfigure the cooler by removing or adding racks to hold standing bottles (my favorite feature), or to arrange different sized bottles .
A blue LED light illuminates the interior and shows off your collection through the tempered glass door. The upper and lower zones use thermoelectric cooling, which is preferred over compressors for its effectiveness and efficiency. Door lock is available allowing you to leave it out of your children's reach.
- Uses thermoelectric cooling system
- Freestanding, dual zone wine cooler that you can use to store all kinds of wines
- Removable wooden racks to reconfigure the interior and organize
- Blue light illuminates the interior
- Black cabinet with stainless steel and tempered glass door
- Takes some squeezing to get the supposed 18-bottle capacity
- Demands a clearance of 5” on all sides, thus restricting placement of the cooler
Kalamera 15" Singe Zone- Best freestanding/built-in wine fridge
The Kalamera 30-bottle built-in wine cooler is a great representation of quality to your guests. It is a suitable choice for single zone cooler in the 30 bottle capacity range. It would be a perfect addition to your kitchen counter.
Kalamera 15" boasts an attractive design that includes a stainless steel door frame and a soft interior light that draws attention to your collection. There is a transparent, double layer, tempered glass window built into the door that allows you to view the bottles while providing adequate insulation.
The interior of the Kalamera 15” 30-bottle cooler has six slotted beech wood shelves. These shelves are removable that allows the user to set wine bottles in any configuration.
slotted beech shelves allows cool air to circulate within the compartment, improving the unit efficiency. Another feature you will appreciate is the LED control display. It uses a high-quality compressor cooling system that produces a mild noise and ventilates from the bottom. This cooling system is designed to prevent any harmful vibrations, so you don’t have to worry about your wine’s natural ingredients being disrupted.
- Negligible noise production
- High-grade compressor cooling system for accurate and even air distribution
- Good visibility of temperature displays
- Elegant design that will add character to any room
- Has a carbon filter to prevent bad odors
- Actual temperature when fully stocked may be higher than displayed
Whynter WC-201TD Thermoelectric- Best budget wine fridge
Whynter is a multinational company with a knack for designing and manufacturing all kinds of convenience products ranging from refrigeration and air conditioners to water dispensers and personal scales.
One of the best wine coolers offered by the company is the WC-201TD, an undercounter wine cooler with a 20 bottle capacity and thermoelectric cooling system.
WC-201TD is a unit perfect for mid-wine lovers. So, if you drink wine more than less than wine freaks, but more than occasional drinkers; this whynter wine chiller is your best choice.
This sleek countertop wine fridge has a mirrored glass door that showcases your wine collection. The glass door is tinted to provide added protection from harmful UV rays. This unit requires freestanding installation, and the adjustable thermostat allows you to store different wine varietals. There is a soft touch control display that you can use to adjust the temperature.
Whynter surely made an ideal space-saving, sleek and stylish design that includes a black cabinet and recessed handle. It also has solid state components, with the only moving parts being the fans that dissipate heat outside the unit and circulate cool air within the undercounter wine refrigerator. Nevertheless, this unit do not have a lock and the box shaped interior offers a little less holding capacity.
- Efficient thermoelectric cooling system with minimal vibrations
- Sleek and stylish design that goes well with any décor
- Has a capacity of 20 bottles
- Tinted glass door for added UV protection
- Not designed for oversized wine bottles
Avanti EWC1201 12-Bottle Counter Top- Slim wine cooler
Extremely stylish and compact, the Avanti EWC1201 countertop slim wine cooler offers a variety of great features. Design of this wine cooler is elegant and the interior shelves look smart.
This Avanti fridge uses single zone technology to preserve the integrity of your wines. Interior shelving allows you to store up to four bottles vertically, so you can store your re-corked or opened wines without worrying about spills.
This 12-bottle thermoelectric cooler features an insulated and double paned glass door that gives you a clear view of your wines. The chrome racks add a nice touch to the already sleek design of the cooler and make the compartment sturdy. A black cabinet is accentuated with a platinum finish to give it a modern look.
This wine fridge makes very good use of its thermoelectric cooling system, which equates to effective and vibration free cooling. It is an environment-friendly cooling technology that consumes little electricity. There is a temperature display unit with soft touch controls. You can store up to four bottles vertically, and the temperature can be set to anywhere between 47 and 64 degrees Fahrenheit. You can store both reds and whites at the same time if you set the temperature to 56 degrees Fahrenheit, as this is acceptable for both varieties.
- Gives you the ability to store opened and r-corked bottles in an upright position
- Looks good with classy digital touch display and glassy door
- Compact design doesn’t take up much space
- A bit heavy in comparison to its size
Edgestar CRW1661SZDUAL 332-Bottle Wine Cellar- for extensive storage
If you are an avid wine collector and need someplace to store your wines, the Edgestar CRW1661SZDUAL will prove a good investment.
It has a capacity to store more than 300 bottles, making it ideal for quickly growing or established wine collections. It's wine fridge that boasts dual zone technology. Its wood-trimmed wire racks and stainless steel trim give it an edgy look. Front ventilation makes flush-for-cabinetry installation possible and allows for freestanding use.
Auto-defrost system ensures that the frost doesn't affects the interior.
Edgestar incorporates powerful circulation fans that work together with a high-grade compressor to distribute air evenly throughout the interior. Use of tinted glass doors is a great way to showcase your collection while providing added protection from harmful light.
This wine-fridge also has integrated carbon filters to act as natural barriers against bad odors. The door has a security lock so you can rest assured that your favorite bottles will be secure.
- Has a capacity of 332 bottles
- Uses dual zone technology to keep your reds and whites preserved
- Compressor and circulating fans operate quietly
- Comes with a black dotted door for protection against UV
- Not ideal for large sized wine bottles
Wine Enthusiast 272031805- Best Dual Zone Slim Wine Cooler
The Wine Enthusiast 18-bottle freestanding wine cooler has a lot to offer the occasional entertainer who loves wine.
Wine Enthusiast slim wine chiller has a nice slender profile that makes it a great fit for narrow spaces. The interior is illuminated with LED lights, making the labels easier to see. It has seven chrome shelves which combine with the stainless steel trim to give the unit a modern look that fits nicely with the décor of the room. The smoky glass also has a stainless steel trim, which combines with the recessed door handle to radiate an elegant appearance. Removable shelves helps a lot with different configuration setups for wine bottles.
Because the thermoelectric cooling technology is designed for optimum performance, the fact that it weighs a little over 50 pounds isn’t much of a surprise.
The right hinged door opens to reveal a dual zone cooling compartment whose internal temperature is tweaked using a touch screen control panel. The top compartment operates within a temperature range of 54 to 66 degrees Fahrenheit and accommodates ten bottles while the lower one operates within a range of 46 and 66 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Dual temperature zones for different wine varietals
- Ability to remove the three bottom racks to store re-corked bottles vertically
- Functional slim design that fits in the narrowest spaces
- Lock is missing
Westinghouse WWT080MB- Thermal Electric Countertop Wine Cooler
If you are looking for a stylish mini wine cooler that will store up to 8 bottles, the Westinghouse WWT080MB is worth considering.
It is an affordable model that will fit nicely with any décor in your kitchen or living room. The unit uses an extra quiet thermoelectric cooling system and operates within a temperature range of 46 to 66 degrees Fahrenheit. You can control the temperature using a handy knob located just outside the door. At only 20.7 pounds, you can place it on a countertop without worrying about damage.
The grey and the tinted door of the fridge provides adequate protection from harmful light. It has a recessed handle and durable chrome shelves that keep your wines organized. Interior LED lighting bounces off the chrome racks and allows you to see the labels. You can also lift-up the wine bottles, thanks to the wine-interior.
- Uses thermoelectric cooling, so you don’t have to worry about noisy operation
- Lightweight and can be placed on countertop without worrying about damage
- Durable chrome shelves can be removed for cleaning or reconfiguration of the cooler
- Only has one cooling zone
Information to help you find the right wine chiller-
With so many options available on the market, here are a few factors to consider to help you choose a wine cooler that best suits your needs. Also, don't forget to buy a good-quality wine opener to save your time.
Built-in vs. freestanding wine cooler
You can purchase a built-in or freestanding cooler depending on how much space you have. Built-in units vent from the front while freestanding coolers vent from the back. Freestanding units are a great option for those with lots of space, but you can always go for small portable models that can be stored on a countertop. The larger models can store up to more than 500 bottles at a time. Built-in wine coolers are usually stored under the counter and blend in nicely with the décor.
Thermoelectric vs. compressor wine coolers
If you are looking for a small wine cooler, consider purchasing something that uses thermoelectric cooling rather than a compressor. This is because thermoelectric wine coolers are reliable, extremely quiet, vibration free and energy efficient. With one of these, you don’t need to worry about your wine being disturbed by additional vibration or noise.
A strong compressor is of paramount importance especially if you intent to store your wine in the basement or garage. Purchasing a compressor wine and beer fridge makes sense if the temperature in your home can’t remain constant. It’s also a good option for someone who wants something effective with a high capacity. The only downside is that wine coolers with a compressor cooling system are noisy.
One thing you will come to discover when shopping for a wine fridge is that there are endless varieties. Every wine requires different ideal storage conditions, and if that weren’t the case, then a wine refrigerator cabinet with a single temperature zone would work for you. A double, triple or quadruple zone wine bottle cooler will prove a good fit for someone who likes a wide variety of wines. Know more about wine storage on this Wikipedia page.
Wine is extremely sensitive to incandescent light and natural lighting, which contains UV rays. Exposure to light can heat the wine bottles and ultimately damage your collection. That said, it is important that you purchase a unit with LED lighting that is safe and gentle on your collection. This lighting also makes it easier to read the labels on the bottles and showcase your wine.
Door design and swing
Another important factor to consider is the design and swing of the door. Some models come with solid wood finish door or stainless steel door. Both of these doors offer total protection from UV rays and any harmful light. Other wine fridges have tempered glass doors, which offer some level of UV protection while showing off your collection.
You have to decide whether a door that opens to the right or left best serves your purposes. This will be determined by where you intend to keep the refrigerator. You want to ensure that the door doesn’t come into contact with obstructions. If you aren’t sure about the door swing, consider a unit with reversible doors as they make it possible to place it in more locations.
So, that was our take for some of the best wine fridges or best wine coolers or best wine chillers.
The models we reviewed above are suitable for indoor use. Some use compressor cooling systems while others use thermoelectric coolers. They have varying capacities and can be installed freestanding, built-in or under the counter.
Depending on how large your collection is, how much you are willing to spend and the available space, your choice of a wine cooler will vary from that of someone else.
However, if you love food more than wine; take a look at our best mini fridge collection.
The trick to making the right choice lies in knowing what your needs are. How large is the collection? Would you prefer a thermoelectric cooler over a compression system? Are you okay with a single zone cooler or would you rather buy a dual zone cooler that allows you to store different wine varieties? All of these are important questions you need to answer.
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