Best Under Counter Wine Cooler 2021; Reviews & Buying Guide

Keep your wines chilled to perfection using these under counter wine coolers.

best under counter wine cooler

If you enjoy drinking and collecting wine, a pick from our list of the Best Under Counter Wine Coolers can be a popular and attractive addition to your home.

An under counter wine cooler provides convenience and can integrate seamlessly into any kitchen. This saves space and guarantees a fresh bottle of wine is always nearby and always at the right temperature.

Designed to seamlessly blend into your kitchen, a built-in under counter wine cooler is a great way to save space and store your wine at the precise serving temperature you prefer. 

Under counter wine coolers are popular with wine enthusiasts who wish to keep a 18-bottle to 56-bottle capacity wine collection.

Whether you’re looking to age your wine or just keep a few of your favorite bottles in a convenient location, an undercounter refrigerator is easily the most luxurious way to store your wine.

Table of Contents

best under counter wine cooler

Benefits Of a Built-in Under Counter Wine Cooler

Aside from storing your wine at the proper temperature, an under counter wine cooler has a number of advantages. A wine cooler can be installed into cabinetry or left freestanding. This means you can fit it into virtually any room. 

To complement many different spaces, built-in/ undercounter wine coolers are available in a variety of finishes; from panel-ready options that blend with their surroundings to smoked stainless steel. 

The under counter wine coolers are also available in a range of capacities, from seven bottles to hundreds. For those who love different types of wine, many built-in wine coolers have multiple temperature zones, allowing you to store a variety of wines. 

When you need ample storage space, some built-in models have reversible door hinges or are available in a left hinge. This means you may install more than one refrigerator side by side, expanding your storage capacity. Adding a wine cooler to your kitchen or entertaining space will also increase your home’s value as many buyers appreciate added luxury and convenience.

But with so many cooling units on the market today, how do you know to choose a best under counter wine cooler for yourself? There’s a lot to consider, which is why we put together this complete under counter wine cooler buying guide. We’ll break down all the essential features and help you consider your budget, tastes, and style.

Best Under Counter Wine Cooler 2021

Comparison Table

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Features
Price
Best 24-Inch Dual Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler
  • 46 bottle capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 24” wide
Best 15-Inch Dual Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler
  • 29 bottle capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 15” wide
Best 24-Inch Single Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler
  • 53 bottle capacity
  • Single zone cooling
  • 24” wide
Best Under Counter Wine & Beverage Cooler
  • 28 bottle & 86 can capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 30” wide
Best Single Zone 15-Inch Under Counter Wine Cooler
  • 30 bottle capacity
  • Single zone cooling
  • 15” wide
Best For More Than 50 Bottles
  • 56 bottles capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 24” wide
Best Rated
  • 30 bottle capacity
  • Single zone cooling
  • 15” wide
Best Compact
  • 36 bottle capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 24” wide
Best Dual Zone French Door
  • 36 bottle capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 24” wide
Best Small 12" Under Counter Wine Cooler
  • 18 bottle capacity
  • Single zone cooling
  • 12” wide
Best 22" Under Counter Wine Cooler
  • 46 bottle capacity
  • Dual zone cooling
  • 22.4” wide

Reviews

Best 24-Inch Dual Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler

If you are searching for the ample storage of your favorite wines, then Kalamera wine cooler 24″ 46-bottle storage is one of the best options for you.

The dual zone mechanism helps to store both types of wines, i.e., red and white. This wine chiller comes with large storage capacity which contributes to accommodate and hold large amounts of our wine assortment. Even though Kalamera comes with a compressor cooling system, it is silent and vibration-free. 

The Kalamera 24” is a perfect under counter wine cooler as it is wide and not tall, meaning that it can hold a substantial amount of wine without taking up a substantial amount of wall space. 

This cooler is just what you need if you are trying to fit it into a bar-like space or simply do not want something tall.

The door frame and the handle are beautiful stainless steel and there are two soft-lit blue LED lights inside. A beautiful lighting feature to illuminate your collection.

This Kalamera has five sliding beech wooden shelves. You can store eight bottles on each shelf. To get a total of 46 bottles – forty bottles on five shelves, plus six more bottles at the bottom of the unit.

The beech wooden shelves guarantee that you can pull out your wine bottles without getting scratches on them.

The Kalamera 46-bottle has a dual zone cooling system; temperature range: 40°-50°F in the upper zone, 50°-66°F in the lower zone. This temperature range can accommodate storing both red and white wines.

As additional points, there is a convenient lock mechanism of universal hexagon bolt lock that prevents kids from getting in and it includes a wine opener as a gesture. 

Pros
  • Elegant and sleek design
  • Reversible door
  • Dual zone cooler
  • Triple-layer tempered glass
  • Quiet, vibration free compressor cooling
  • Large 46 bottles storage
Cons
  • Glass may get fogged up sometimes

Best 15-Inch Dual Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler

The NewAir AWR-290DB wine cooler is a 29 bottle dual zone wine cooler. Of course, the number of bottles you can fit in this cooler will depend upon the size of those bottles. The bigger the bottles are, the fewer you will fit in.

The wine cooler is made with a lot of flashy stainless steel on its exterior.

The thick stainless steel trim outlines this cooler’s clear glass doors which makes quite a statement. It doesn’t allow this unit to fit seamlessly into the flow of the cabinets, but, instead, draws the eye directly to it. 

The wooden shelves are visible through the glass door and will nicely accent any kitchen with stained or raw wood cabinetry.

The NewAir AWR-290DB is one of the best compact under counter wine cooler as its exterior measurement is only 15 inches in width  by 23 inches in depth and 34 inches tall. You can place this compact wine cooler virtually anywhere.

This NewAir AWR-290DB features 5 easy slide-out beech wood shelves. These removable shelves provide easy access to your wine. You can also adjust the height of the shelves to accommodate larger bottle size.

It is perfect to install as an under-counter built-in if you wish. Of course, it looks beautiful as a free-standing unit as well – as it has a fully- finished exterior.

The NewAir AWR-290DB is a dual zone cooler so you can store your white wines chilled for drinking and keep your red wines a bit warmer, at “cellar temperature”. 

This unit has fantastic air circulation, something very important in compressor-style cooling systems. Since these systems rely on fans blowing cool air around, it is obvious that many of these systems, such as those in typical refrigerators, will have cold and warm spots.

The NewAir AWR-290DB-B wine cooler has a very quiet compressor making the cooler attractive, quiet, and efficient. NewAir provides a one year limited manufacturer’s warranty.

Pros
  • UV protection
  • Reversible doors
  • Flexible temperature range
  • Light humming noise and no vibration
  • Modern chic appearance 
  • Racks won’t scrape bottles
  • Compact
Cons
  • Controls are behind the doors
  • Poor user manual

Best 24-Inch Single Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler

With a comprehensive storage capacity to house 53 standard wine bottles of 750ml, the EdgeStar 53 bottle wine cooler preserves your wines at a temperature range between 40° and 65°.  This temperature range is perfect for storage of all types of wine. However, this particular wine refrigerator is a single zone so you must choose one temperature to store all of the wine at.

The Edgestar CWR532SZ is aesthetically very  appealing. This freestanding or under-counter wine cooler suits contemporary kitchens and modern bars. 

It features a stainless steel exterior and wood-trimmed wire wine racks exuding an overall quality build. The tinted glass doors and soft blue LED lighting perfectly highlight your wine collection for easy viewing.

This EdgeStar model is one of the best under counter wine cooler that fits up to 53 standard-sized Bordeaux bottles (750 mL). It has six removable shelves that slide out easily for easy access and cleaning.

The stainless steel handle on the wine fridge door is reversible and ergonomic and has a door lock to keep your wine collection safe.

The wine cooler features an Air Cooled Technology where the entire interior is cooled to your desired temperature as air cooled technology uses powerful circulation fans to evenly distribute cool air eliminating hot spots and uneven cooling.

The intuitive touch control and digital temperature display allow you to easily adjust and monitor the desired temperature based on your specific cooling needs.

Pros
  • Minimal noise
  • Reversible door for setting it up anywhere you please
  • Easy to manage temperature setting
  • Well-lit and transparent wine fridge equipped with a security lock feature
Cons
  • Wine racks can’t fit large bottles without reducing bottle capacity
  • Single-zone temperature operation only

Best Under Counter Wine & Beverage Cooler

This EdgeStar wine cooler is somewhat unique in that it is intended to store both wine bottles and other container beverage types, such as soft drinks or beer. 

This dual zone refrigerator is capable of accommodating up to twenty-eight 750 mL wine bottles and eighty-six 12 oz. cans. 

As the perfect addition to entertainment rooms, home bars and kitchen islands, this wine and beverage center offers space-saving, intuitive storage for all your drink essentials. 

The left cooling zone is intended for holding wine, offering a temperature range of 40-65°F to accommodate many different varieties, along with your own personal preference. 

The right zone is ideal for storing canned beverages, such as beer or soda, with a temperature range of 38-65°F.

No matter where you choose to install this wine and beverage cooler, its front-venting design is ideal for undercounter, flush-mount and freestanding applications.

Whether you prefer a glass of wine or can of beer with dinner, this EdgeStar unit’s dual-zone design will hold multiple types of beverages at optimal storage conditions.

The doors have black glass with interior LED lighting to show off your collection. Powerful but quiet interior fans ensure quick and even cooling of your wine and help maintain the ideal storage temperature. Each door locks to protect your collection.

Shelves slide out smoothly so there’s no need to reach when selecting items stored towards the back.

 Although you can view your collection clearly, harmful elements such as UV rays and heat are prevented from entering the cooler and compromising the integrity of your wine. 

Pros
  • UV protection
  • Flexibility to store multiple types of beverages
  • Doors lock separately
  • Powerful & efficient
  • Quiet operation
  • Attractive interior lighting
Cons
  • Limited warranty

Best Single Zone 15-Inch Under Counter Wine Cooler

This Kalamera 30 bottle wine cooler will complement the look of any modern appliances in your kitchen as it has a very attractive design. 

Its stainless steel door frame and handle softly reflect light in a way that immediately draws your attention. 

Its transparent double-layer tempered glass window built into the door offers adequate insulation while allowing you to clearly view the labels on each of your wine bottles.

This is one of the best under counter wine cooler as its ability to slide under a countertop and between cupboards (or even other appliances) makes it perfect for any kitchen or bar space.

The gorgeous beechwood shelves in this 15-inch under counter wine cooler add a unique charm and class in the combination of beautiful exterior and the wood beneath the glass door.

The shelves, although relatively thin, are strong enough to hold heavy wine bottles, and they do not damage the wine bottles and labels. There are also stoppers on both sides of each shelf. They are there to stop the shelves from being pulled all the way out.

The quality compressor used ensures evenly cooled space for the wine bottles. The cooler also has an outstanding compressor vibration reduction gear, which minimizes the vibration to reduce noise and its effect on the quality of the wine.

This 30-bottle has a  reversible  and  double-layer  tempered glass door. You can change the swing of the door by changing the door hinge from left to right or vice versa, to accommodate your space configuration.

This 15-inch under counter wine cooler comes equipped with an LCD temperature display. It allows you to monitor and select the right temperature for your wines between 40 and 66F.

Wine coolers are child magnets because of the enclosed space they can hide or play in. To prevent this, there is a built in hexagon bolt lock on this unit, avoiding any untoward incidents involving your kids. This mechanism also protects your wine from ill-mannered visitors.

Pros
  • Elegant design adds character to any room
  • High quality compressor unit for even and accurate cool air distribution
  • Fits great as a trash compactor replacement
  • Negligible noise production
  • Visibility of the temp display and labels is very good
Cons
  • When fully stocked, actual temperature may be a bit higher than displayed

Best For More Than 50 Bottles

The Allavino FlexCount Dual Zone Wine Cooler is a stylish and convenient wine cooler perfect for anyone looking to store a diverse wine collection.

This Allavino has a front-venting design that works well as a built-in to your cabinetry. With a width of 23.4 inches and a height of 33.9 inches, it is an ideal under-counter installation.

This Allavino model is fully finished on all sides. It has an elegant black exterior and stainless steel frame door.

Looking at the 24” exterior of the FlexCount, you would not think it could fit as many as 56 bottles. It has 5 shelves that can fit 9 bottles each. There is a bottom shelf that can accommodate up to 11 bottles.

The FlexCount shelves are thinner than the standard wine cooler shelves but are noticeably stronger.

They are tough metal racks that do not sag from the weight of heavy bottles. They also glide in and out effortlessly on their ball-bearing tracks. Also, they have wood slats that protect your bottles from vibration.

The temperature control panel is intuitive and easy to use. It allows you to alter the temperature in the upper and lower zones, turn the interior light on and off, turn the entire unit on and off, and alternate between Celsius and Fahrenheit on the LCD display.

Allavino uses fan-forced cooling technology, which, according to them, is 25% more efficient. This mechanism circulates air throughout the chamber, thereby speeding up the cooling process.

Allavino’s FlexCount VSWR56-2SSRN has a lock at the bottom of the door. A good feature to prevent kids from accessing your collection.

Pros
  • It fits champagnes.
  • The body is very sturdy and solidly built.
  • Its exterior has a stylish, industrial look.
  • It is a front-venting unit
Cons
  • Dual-zone wine coolers are prone to temperature fluctuations

Best Rated

The EdgeStar CWR302SZ is designed to accommodate up to 30 standard Bordeaux bottles. 

The front ventilation allows for flush-with-cabinetry or undercounter installation while the fully finished black cabinet allows for freestanding use, as well.

The front panel features a tinted glass door with black dots for UV protection. This ensures a clear view of your wines while making sure your wines won’t be affected by sunlight.

This model’s stainless steel trimmed door, slide-out wood trimmed wire wine racks, and soft LED lighting add to an overall great presentation of your collection.

This wine cooler is stylish enough to stand on its own in your bar, dining area, or kitchen. With proper air ventilation throughout, you can also use it as an under-counter wine cooler or as a built-in. 

One of the most impressive aspects of this 15” under counter single zone wine cooler is its large temperature control range, which allows for adjustments between 40º-66°F. This means that you’ll be able to keep your white wine ultra-cool.

The wine refrigerator has built-in fans for ventilation that allows the unit to be built into under counters surrounded by cabinetry. It also has internal fans that evenly distribute cool air to avoid hot spots.

The unit has an alarm that sounds when the door has been open for a prolonged period of time, making sure that you’re notified before your wine starts to heat up.

Pros
  • Slim, narrow design that fits under counters
  • Freestanding capable
  • Odor control
  • Proper ventilation and air circulation
  • Energy-efficient, running at 120 watts
Cons
  • Non-adjustable shelves
Also Read

Best Compact

This model is a classic beauty – comes in a black cabinet and black framed glass French doors. This versatile wine refrigerator features a front-venting design and finished cabinet that give you the option to build it into your cabinetry, use it as an under counter wine cooler or a stylish freestanding addition to any room in your home.

With up to 18 bottles in each zone, you can comfortably fit 36 bottles in a compact space. The Allavino VSWR36-2BWFN is one of the best under counter wine cooler as each zone of this dual-zone wine refrigerator can be set low enough for sparkling wine or high enough for red wine; you can set both zones to the same temperature if you find you are only storing one type.

Each zone has its own digital display with easy to use push button controls so setting and reading the display is a breeze. 

Cool blue LED lighting beautifully elegantly illuminates your bottles while remaining cooler than standard bulbs, and can be turned on or off with the push of a button.

This model features revolutionary metal shelves that are strong enough to hold bottles without sagging, yet thin enough to maximize the available space in the cabinet for wine storage. Wood slats refine each shelf and gently hold each bottle to prevent harmful vibration from affecting your wine.

The intelligent design of the shelves creates more space between each shelf, allowing you to store bottles with varying diameters without having to remove racks which would reduce your overall capacity.

Pros
  • Dual Zone Temperature Control
  • Wood trim
  • Wood trays with ball bearing shelving
  • LED temperature control
  • French Doors
  • Energy efficiency
Cons
  • Not loud but not whisper quiet either

Best Dual Zone French Door

The Edgestar CWR362FD has an extremely elegant design. It is built with stainless steel French doors, which definitely make it look classy. Its wooden slide-out shelves are trimmed with stainless steel as well, and comes with blue LED lighting to showcase your wine collection.

The fridge comes with French doors and two separate temperature zones that can be controlled independently of each other. 

Each zone has a temperature range of 40°F to 65°F. Thus, each red and white wine can be stored at its desired temperature.

Your wine bottles can also rest assured that air will be evenly distributed all across the fridge, thanks to its air cooled technology. This means you do not need to worry about hot spots or uneven cooling.

Another great feature is that it can be both an under counter wine cooler, built-in or a free standing unit. The front ventilation allows you to install it flush with your cabinets, and the closed back allows you to let it be freestanding.

This model is one of the best under counter wine coolers as it is designed with tinted glass doors – your wine bottles will still be visible from the outside, but they will be protected from UV rays and harsh light. In addition, the wine cooler has a built-in carbon filter, so there is no chance for external unpleasant odor to get in.

The Edgestar CWR362FD offers a safety lock so even though you are not at home, you can rest assured that your favorite wines are safe in a place where no underage or unwanted guest could get a hold of them.

Pros
  • Whisper-silent operation
  • Extremely good looking and elegant
  • Safety lock
  • Tinted glass door
  • Removable bottle rack
  • Precise temperature control
Cons
  • The distribution of light is somewhat uneven

Best Small 12" Under Counter Wine Cooler

If you are looking for a small under counter wine cooler, this wine cooler is a great choice. It is only 12-inches wide so it will fit in many narrow spaces. So it is great for homes big or small that need a smaller size wine cooler. It offers up a one touch single zone temp control, so you can set the temp exactly where you want it.

This Kalamera 18-bottle wine cooler has a compressor-based cooling system. 

This model is one of the best compact under counter wine cooler and it has a modern and elegant exterior – stainless steel frame, front venting,  reversible  and  double-layer  tempered glass door.

You can adjust the temperature range of this single zone under counter wine cooler in between the 40°F to 66°F. 

Since this is a single zone, you can only set one temperature for the cooler. If your collection is primarily white, you can still store your red wine in the cooler zone. You will want to take your red wine out of the cooler ten minutes before you serve it – to make it less cold.

This Kalamera 12 Bottle under counter wine cooler is equipped with an easy-to-use touch control panel along with the LED display.

It is designed with a built-in or under-the-counter use in mind. But you could just as easily set it up somewhere in your home as a freestanding unit.

This Kalamera 12-inch wide has six beech wooden shelves. These are sliding racks – a good feature to get access to your wine bottles easily. You can store three bottles on each shelf with a total of 18 bottles.

This cooler also offers low noise and vibration as well. So you won’t be disturbed by the operation of this cooler. 

The sediment will not be disturbed by the vibration, which is also important for great tasting wine.

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Good Size & Weight
  • Looks Great
  • Slim width makes it versatile
  • Restores temperature after power loss
Cons
  • Limited temperature range

Best 22" Under Counter Wine Cooler

What can you do if you want a built-in wine cooler right now, but you also want the flexibility of a standalone unit if you move house or change your mind about placement? Well, this dual-zone wine cooler from Phiestina gives you the option of installation using either method, so you never need to compromise.

If you collect both red and white wine, you’ll appreciate they need storing at different temperatures. This is the key selling point of any dual-zone cooler, and something well-executed on this model. 

The upper zone will keep your white wine chilled between 40F and 50F. Down below, keep your favorite reds cooled from 50F to 66F. Choose to display the temperature in Celsius or Fahrenheit. Again, you don’t need to make sacrifices with the Phiestina.

You get even more flexibility when it comes to positioning thanks to the reversible door hinge. This allows you to make full use of cramped spaces and to enjoy personalized set-up.

While this wine cooler will keep all your favorite bottles chilled at the right temperature either short-term or long-term, it runs very quietly and you won’t be menaced by that tedious thrumming sound.

5 removable shelves mean you can configure your storage environment to suit your wine collection. These shelves are also fully adjustable.

If you want a hard-hitting wine cooler delivering impressive capacity without dominating the whole kitchen, give the Phiestina a shot. Build quality and performance are more than fit for purpose, and this cooler is keenly priced, too.

Pros
  • Compact footprint 
  • Store both red and white wines 
  • Very versatile in terms of placement options
  • Large storage
Cons
  • Not for large bottles

Under Counter Wine Cooler Buying Guide

Whether you’re a long-term wine lover or are just beginning to develop your palate, proper wine storage is essential for getting the most enjoyment out of each bottle. Whether you choose a built-in under counter wine cooler for your kitchen or a freestanding wine cooler for a dedicated wine cellar, adding a wine refrigerator to your home is the best way to ensure that your wine stays fresh and ages perfectly.

best under counter wine coolers dual zone
Wine Storage Basics

Wine is a delicate, natural product. Like the fruits that it’s made of, wine will eventually spoil if not properly stored. When wine goes bad, the compounds that make up its complex flavors and aromas break down, leaving you with something that tastes more like vinegar than vino.

To keep this from happening, wine must be protected from three big enemies: extreme temperatures, ultraviolet rays, and vibrations.

Why Do You Need a Wine Cooler?

A dedicated wine cooler is designed specifically to address the needs of wine. It provides a steady temperature year round while blocking out excess sunlight and keeping artificial light to a minimum. 

A wine cooler creates the ideal environment for wine. It stores wine at its ideal temperature, humidity, and stability.

Wine coolers are budget friendly and generally cost less than a wine cellar, wine cabinet, and standard refrigerator.

Wine coolers are designed with a simple system that costs less to maintain. The individual parts needed to repair a wine refrigerator’s motor are much cheaper when compared to a standard refrigerator or wine cellar.

With a diverse range of sizes/bottle capacities, both under counter built-in and freestanding designs, wine coolers can easily fit into a variety of spaces.

A wine cooler may store other beverages safely without spoiling them or the wine. Some of these drinks include soda water, plain water, lemonade, and other non-alcoholic beverages. Since the wine cooler maintains a temperature warmer than a standard refrigerator, you should not place perishables inside.

Understanding Wine Serving Temperature

Wines can be broken into three basic categories when it comes to serving temperatures:

Red Wines: Traditionally, red wines are served at room temperature. Today’s houses are kept much warmer than they were in the past, so this really means somewhere between 60 and 65 degrees.

White Wines: White wines typically taste better chilled, but not so cold that you can’t distinguish the delicate flavors. These should be served between 50 and 60 degrees.

Sparkling Wines: Carbonated drinks are at their best when served as cold as possible. For Champagne and other sparklers, 40 degrees will do nicely.

Wine Storage Guidelines

Cooler temperatures are key, but not too cool. Storing wine anywhere with a temperature above 70°F will age wine rapidly and if the temperature rises higher, you may potentially cook your wine, causing it to lose its flavors and aromas. 

Conversely, if the temperature is too cold, wine may freeze, causing the liquid inside the bottle to form ice particles, pushing out the cork. A desirable temperature range is between 45°F and 65°F, the “perfect” temperature being 55°F.

Steady temperature is important. Temperature fluctuations are a big “no-no” when it comes to wine storage. Swinging from a cold location to hot causes wine to expand and contract, which means the wine may push out the cork or contract and cause seepage from a dried-out cork. The cork needs to stay moist to maintain a seal.

Light is wine’s enemy. UV rays can prematurely age wine. This is why most vintners opt for colored glass bottles that protect their wine from light. 

A lightbulb will not age wine but could potentially fade the wine labels if they are exposed for extended periods of time. Since fluorescent bulbs emit a small amount of ultraviolet light, an incandescent bulb or LED light is a safer option.

Humidity is important, but not mandatory. Dry air will dry out the cork of a wine bottle, causing air to sneak in and spoil the wine. If you are storing bottles for 10 years or more, then you do want to maintain an ideal humidity level of 70%. 

Safe range is between 50-80% humidity, which is achievable in most climates by simply placing a pan of water inside the storage area. Conversely, if there is too much humidity and the cellar is damp, mold can begin to form.

best under counter wine coolers dual zone

Store bottles on their side. Rest bottles on their side for the long term to ensure that the liquid inside the bottle keeps the cork moist. 

Storing bottles horizontally is also more space efficient. If a bottle is already open, you should store the bottle upright to prevent spillage as most wine stoppers are not perfectly air tight.

The less vibration, the better. In theory, vibrations in the storage area will damage the wine by causing unwanted chemical reactions, thus aging the wine more quickly. Significant vibrations could kick up sediment in older wines, causing them to have a dirty or gritty flavor. 

Vibration is not as important if you’re storing the wine short term, however, you still want to avoid moving the bottles too often.

Difference Between A Standard Refrigerator And A Wine Cooler

In order to keep your food safe for consumption, a standard refrigerator is set between 32-40°F. While this will keep your juice and milk at the ideal temperature, it is far too cold for wine, which is best stored between 45-65°F.

Your refrigerator is too busy — if you have an active household, your refrigerator door is more than likely opening and closing constantly. All this activity may cause unwanted vibrations that are harmful to wine.

Food has a distinctive odor that may penetrate the cork of your wine and cause it to have an unpleasant taste.

Standard refrigerators are designed to cool rapidly and decrease humidity, whereas a wine refrigerator maintains humidity and lowers temperature gradually.

One thing that standard refrigerators and wine refrigerators do have in common is they run on compressors. However, the compressors used in wine refrigerators have a unique design that absorbs any vibration caused by the compressor.

Single Zone Under Counter Wine Cooler Or A Dual Zone?

If you only collect one type of wine (red or white), then a single-zone under counter wine cooler should suffice. If you have an equal love for both red and white wines, then a dual-zone cooler will benefit you since you can set one zone at a lower temperature than the other. 

Additionally, dual-zone under counter wine coolers present the option to set one zone to storage temperature and the other to serving temperature. If you anticipate you will be uncorking a bottle in the near future, you can simply move your wine from the storage to service zone for about 30 minutes to an hour.

How Does A Best Under Counter Wine Cooler Cool Your Wine?

Wine coolers use either thermoelectric or compressor technology. A compressor system uses gas to lower the temperature. Thermoelectric coolers use a module that controls fans.

Compressor wine cooler operates similar to a standard refrigerator. Air is compressed and then released to reduce the temperature of the interior. This process is known as the “vapor compression cycle”. 

This process helps to reduce the temperature significantly. The compressor wine cooler contains the refrigeration chambers in which a compressor is used to compress refrigerant molecules electronically. 

This increases the temperature of the particles. The particles are then released suddenly which in turn decreases the temperature of the air. This cold air is blown through the interior of the cooler using a small fan. Heat is expelled at the back of the unit. 

Thermoelectric wine coolers use an electric current to create a temperature differential between the inside of the cooler and the external environment. The system utilizes a metal rod which is electrolyzed. 

The heated end faces the exterior in order to remove the heat from the interior of the wine cooler. The cooler end faces the interior. Similar to the compressor wine cooler, a small fan distributes the cool air throughout the inside. 

There is no alternating mechanism and no motors or compressors to create excess noise or vibrations. These units are generally quiet but there may be a small amount of noise coming from the fan. 

best under counter wine cooler

What size under counter wine cooler unit should you buy?

First, ask yourself the following questions:

  • How much space do I have for the under counter wine cooler?
  • How large is my current wine collection?
  • How much wine do I plan to buy in the future?
  • Do I need to cool other beverages along with my wine?
What are the dimension-widths for under-counter wine coolers?

The under counter wine coolers generally come in the following dimension-widths.

  • Under-counter wine cooler 30-inch wide.
  • Under-counter wine cooler 24-inch wide (the most popular type).
  • Under-counter wine cooler 15-inch wide.
  • Under-counter wine cooler 12-inch wide.

We are glad to inform you that our list of Best Under Counter Wine Cooler 2020 has various models in all the above dimensions.

We recommend that you select an under counter wine cooler with the storage capacity for 20-55% more wine than what you have on hand. You’ll have sufficient room for your collection to grow and have enough wine on hand to entertain.

  • On average, most under counter wine coolers on the market store between 20-30 bottles of wine
  • For those who prefer to store only 1 bottle of wine, there are single bottle options available
  • For enthusiastic wine collectors, larger capacity wine coolers store between 100 to 300 bottles

Size is also one of the main reasons under counter wine cooler has an advantage over a traditional wine cellar; with a variety of sizes, you’re sure to find one that fits your space.

What are the common questions you should ask before purchasing an under counter wine cooler?
  • How many bottles do I purchase vs. drink each month? If you purchase and drink at a similar rate, then a wine cooler for short term storage (wine cooler/refrigerator) is perfect for you.
  • Do you store white wine, red, or both?
  • How long do you plan to store your wine?
  • What is your budget?
What are some common areas to place an under counter wine cooler inside your home?

The kitchen, living room, dining room, man cave, bar, basement, garage, outdoor patio or entertaining space, under the stairs, closet (with proper air circulation), the family room, or inside your personal wine cellar.

How to Choose an Under Counter Wine Cooler: Important Features To Look For

Noise

Where do you plan to keep your new under counter wine cooler? This will have a major impact on how much noise you’ll be able to tolerate from your appliance. 

Noise won’t matter much in a wine cellar that’s far removed from the rest of the house. On the other hand, a wine fridge in a media room or near the TV shouldn’t interrupt your evening when it kicks on.

Shelves

An under counter wine cooler with racks designed to hold bottles on their sides will keep corks moist by keeping them in contact with the wine. This keeps corks plump to seal out bacteria for years. 

Storing bottles on their sides is also useful for aging fine wines because it maximizes the surface area of wine allowed to oxidize in storage.

Not all beverage coolers are designed for wine. Choose a model with smooth rolling, wooden shelves or metal wine racking designed to cradle wine bottles on their sides. This makes it easier to see every bottle and ensures that corks stay moist during storage.

Appearance

A beautiful under counter wine cooler makes a statement in your home. Choosing the right one shows that you’re knowledgeable about wine and savvy about making additions to your kitchen or home bar that will increase your home’s value — not to mention provide years of convenience and enjoyment.

As you shop for an under counter wine cooler, consider the overall style of the rest of your home. There’s no more popular look for kitchens and home bars than stainless steel, so don’t settle for less if you crave a high-end look in your home. 

Black finishes also blend well in many design schemes and are always a classic. The finish of the refrigerator door and sides should blend nicely in whatever room you plan to keep your under counter wine cooler.

Energy Efficiency

To keep your wines at a steady storage and serving temperature, your wine fridge will always be on. To minimize the impact on your electric bill, pay close attention to how much energy each model uses, and look for energy efficient design elements such as thermoelectric cooling, LED lighting and triple pane glass.

Bottle Capacity

How large is your wine collection? Choosing a right-sized wine cooler will help you get the most out of your investment. Consider how many wine bottles you have on hand on any given day, and add 20% to give you room to grow — or just to hold extra bottles for a holiday. 

Choosing an under counter wine fridge that’s much larger than your needs will force it to work harder to cool empty space; choosing one that you outgrow immediately will just be frustrating. Nearly all wine fridges list their bottle capacities clearly on the box or in the product description.

Cooling Zones

Not all wine coolers offer dual temperature zones that allow you to set each section at a different temperature. This is a highly useful feature for wine collectors who love red and white wines equally. 

Dual temperature zones allow you to fine-tune your wine storage by providing two compartments that each has a separate control panel. You can set the temperature in one zone to be significantly cooler than the other, making this type of refrigerator perfect for serving different types of wine at the perfect temperature.

If you’re looking for a very compact wine cooler, however, single zone fridges are your best choice. They’re also more budget-friendly. 

Single zone cooling simply means that the interior of the wine fridge is all the same temperature, so every shelf keeps all your wine evenly cooled.

Additional Features

Once you have decided on the basics for your under counter wine cooler, it’s time to think about special features. These are all the safety, convenience and style attributes that turn a basic wine fridge into something truly special.

The most useful features to add to your list would be UV protection, child lock and reversible doors.

Conclusion

When it comes to buying the best under counter wine cooler, there’s a lot to think about. Consider all of these factors as you shop so you can narrow your choices and find the right combination of features for your wine cooler. 

An under counter wine cooler is one of the best ways to store your wine and improve the value of your home. With our list of under counter wine coolers, we are confident you will find the right unit for your home and lifestyle.

There’s no one “right” wine cooler out there — the best under counter wine cooler is the one that has all the features you want at a price you can afford.

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