You’ll need a wine cooler to keep your collection of merlots and chardonnays at ideal temperatures.
Truth be told, a good cooler can give you a crisp pour every time you reach for a bottle. Some would go so far as to say that the chill enhances a wine’s flavor. But what are the features that make for a good cooler? The answer depends on your needs, budget, and wine preferences.
For example, a dual-zone cooler allows you to store different types of wine in two temperature zones. If you’re sold on our picks for the best wine coolers, check out the buyer’s guide and you’ll be able to make your own selection.
Best Wine Coolers Comparison Chart
NutriChef PKTEWC120 Nutrichef 12 Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler Refrigerator | Red, White, Champagne Chiller | Counter Top Wine Cellar | Quiet Operation Fridge | Touch Temperature Control
Wine Enthusiast Silent 18 Bottle Wine Refrigerator – Freestanding Slimline Upright Bottle Storage Wine Cooler, Black
Danby 36 Bottle Freestanding Wine Cooler
Magic Chef MCWC12B Black 12-Bottle Single-Zone Wine Cooler, Rack
Koldfront TWR247ESS 24 Bottle Free Standing Dual Zone Wine Cooler – Black and Stainless Steel
Best Wine Coolers Reviews
NutriChef PKTEWC120 12-Bottle Wine Cooler
This NutriChef is a 12-bottle countertop wine cooler. It is compact and sports a contemporary design that fits most kitchens. Plus, it packs a lot of technology for such a small and budget-friendly unit. The wine cooler is also available with stainless-steel doors if you desire a more premium look.
At first, the NutriChef catches the eye with its elegant design. You won’t miss the touch controls or the small LCD display at the top front. The model utilizes thermoelectric technology for the temperature, which you’d set with the temperature up and down buttons.
The NutriChef also has a ventilation grill and a circulation fan to evenly distribute cold air. This wine cooler is not noisy at all, which allows you to keep the unit on top of your bar and enjoy a glass right next to it. And it features a reinforced glass door that has an airtight seal.
On the other hand, the nearly configured polished-chrome racks are probably the unit’s main highlight. The wine cooler can hold four bottles in the vertical position and eight bottles lying on their side. This means that you can chill up to four opened bottles of wine.
As for the size, this wine cooler is sized for bottles of 12.6” length and 3.4” diameter. The unit itself measures 9.9 x 19.7 x 25 inches and about 28 pounds. The temperature range is 50°F to 65°F, which makes it great for storing different types of wine.
What I Like
The NutriChef PKTEWC120 offers excellent value for the money. It’s great that there’s room for standing bottles and this wine cooler is really quiet. Don’t forget that you can also opt for the stainless steel doors for just a little more.
What I Don’t Like
It’s small and holds only 12 bottles of wine. You also need to factor in the extra countertop space since it needs 6 or more inches of clearance to work properly.
- 4 standing bottles
- Thermoelectric cooling
- Quiet operation
Wine Enthusiast 18-Bottle Wine Cooler
This wine cooler is an excellent choice for those who wish to get greater, but not too great, capacity. The cooler features two separate cooling zones and can house bottles larger than the Bordeaux size.
First of all, the Wine Enthusiast is a freestanding 18-bottle wine cooler. The unit measures 9.9 x 20.2 x 37.5 inches and 36 pounds. As a slim and compact wine cooler, you shouldn’t have problems integrating it into your kitchen.
Size and weight aside, this unit shines in terms of cooling technology and options. As said, there are two cooling zones. The top zone is perfect for chilling your reds to a 54°F to 66°F range and the bottom range of 44°F to 66°F is suitable for whites.
The Wine Enthusiast utilizes thermoelectric refrigeration technology and is CFC-free, which makes the cooler energy-efficient and silent. There’s one LCD for each cooling zone and you can easily adjust the temperature.
Another major highlight is the storage/cooling area. The unit features seven pull-out racks which can hold non-standard bottles. The racks are also easy to remove so you wouldn’t have to worry about scraping when storing larger bottles.
What I Like
Without a doubt, the dual cooling zones are the best feature of this unit. The interior layout also allows you to place some bottles standing up. Plus, you have the option to cool larger bottles. You might also find the sleek matte black finish appealing.
What I don’t Like
It’s still not really big enough for a larger collection of wine. In addition, only the top section of the door is see-through glass. (This might make it a suitable decoy, we might add. You can put bottles of wine on top just for show and your stacks of cash on the bottom where it’s not visible.)
- Dual cooling zones
- 18-bottle capacity
- Slim design
- Suitable for different types of wine
Limited visibility through the door
Danby DWC93BLSDB 36-Bottle Wine Cooler
Are you looking for a wine cooler that can house a genuine home wine collection? If so, the Danby DWC93BLSDB 36-Bottle Wine Cooler might be right up your alley. If you consider affordably in terms of price per bottle, this unit comes out a winner.
To start off, this Danby measures 17.5 x 20.1 x 32.7 inches and features a reinforced glass door. With these dimensions, you get 3.3 cubic feet of internal capacity. In addition, the glass door features UV protection to safeguard your collection from harmful light, and also the interior lights are blue LED instead of incandescent.
The door sports a stainless steel trim and a pocket handle on the side. The swing is reversible right or left. The aforementioned blue LED lights give off a nice glow to showcase the collection without interfering with the cooling.
When it comes to temperature range, this model is rated at between 43°F and 57°F. You should know that it’s a single-zone cooler and the temperature is not user-adjustable.
There are six shelves at the top and two racks at the bottom. The bottom racks allow a different bottle orientation to make use of some extra space on the side.
What I Like
On a per bottle basis, the Danby DWC93BLSDB offers excellent value for the money and it can be used to cool other beverages. You get an all-glass door with reversible hinges. It’s available in two finishes (all black or black and stainless steel) and three sizes (17, 36, or 75 bottles).
What I Don’t Like
This model doesn’t come with a thermostat or thermometer, which means that you need to buy a temperature gauge separately and you can’t set the temperature. The refrigeration section is compressor-based rather than thermoelectric, so it’s going to operate louder (like your kitchen fridge).
- 36-bottle capacity
- Blue LED lights
- Affordable on a per bottle basis
- Full tempered glass door
- Available in 3 sizes and 2 finishes
- Non-adjustable temperature
- Louder compressor refrigeration section
Magic Chef MCWC12 12-Bottle Wine Cooler
This Magic Chef might be one of the best wine coolers for those who are looking for something small, cheap, and simple. It is among the most compact 12-bottle units.
This cooler uses thermoelectric refrigeration, which makes it quiet and vibration-free. The cooling range is 54°F to 66°F. At the top part of the front are a small LCD display and plus and minus buttons for setting the desired temperature.
It’s not hard to guess that this is a single-zone wine cooler, but this doesn’t mean you can only store reds or whites. The controls allow you to set the right temperature for your preference and types of wine.
The Magic Chef MCWC12 measures 14.2 x 19 x 20.1 inches and about 26 pounds. This makes it perfect for those who are strapped for space. This convenient countertop unit features a matte black finish and an elegant full-glass door.
Storage-wise, there are four chrome-plated racks that are designed to hold standard-sized bottles. The racks are also removable. An interior LED light illuminates the content. Finally, the adjustable legs allow you to level the unit on any surface.
What I Like
This wine cooler is cheap and small. It’s always nice to have a full glass door and an interior light that can make your chilled collection an accent piece. Plus, you don’t need to worry about vibrations and noise since it has a thermoelectric refrigeration section.
What I Don’t Like
On the flipside, thermoelectric coolers are affected by room temperature. So this or any other thermoelectric wine cooler may not reach the set temperature. But as long as the room temperature is around 77°F, there is nothing to worry about.
- Small and compact
- 55°F to 66°F temperature range
- Silent and vibration-free
Works best at 77°F room temperature
Koldfront TWR247ESS 24-Bottle Wine Cooler
Those who want a showstopper of a wine cooler should check out the Koldfront TWR247ESS. It’s equipped with all the bells and whistles that can put a smile on the face of any wine connoisseur. And yes, it’s a dual-zone freestanding cooler with a full-glass door and digital temperature controls.
As indicated, this wine cooler has two cooling zones. It uses thermoelectric cooling technology. The upper zone is capable of maintaining the temperature at 54°F to 66°F and the lower one 46°F to 66°F. You can control either zone via a touch panel and monitor the individual temperature LCD.
This Koldfront model measures 14 x 22.25 x 33.5 inches and 48 pounds. Given the capacity, it’s okay to put this wine cooler in the compact category. But you’ll still need to dedicate a spot in your kitchen or living room for this unit alone.
A lot of attention to detail and thought seems to have gone into the design of this unit. The Koldfront sports a full glass door with stylish stainless steel trim. There is a long stainless steel handle on the left but this model doesn’t offer reversible door.
But it does offer 6 retractable wooden racks, plus two additional ones at the center and bottom of the unit. Each rack can hold three standard bottles — Bordeaux-style 750ml bottles of 2.75” diameter. But if you need to store a larger bottle, it’s easy to remove one of the racks.
What I Like
Right off the bat, this wine cooler is bound to wow you with its stylish looks. However, there’s much more to it than that. You get dual cooling zones, removable wooden racks, a full glass door, and precise temperature settings. All of this comes at a price that won’t burn a hole in your pocket.
What I Don’t Like
Despite being one of the best wine coolers, it’d be great if it offered an option to store the bottles in an upright position without having to remove the shelves.
- Dual-zone cooling
- Removable wooden racks
- Stylish design
- 24-bottle capacity
- Available in 3 sizes
No room for standing bottles
Features like bottle capacity, dimensions, and temperature range should be accounted for when buying a wine cooler. In addition, you may want to know all the wine cooler types and the warranty that comes with them.
Types of Wine Coolers
Although the types of wine coolers are not set in stone, they can be divided into several categories: cooling technology, installation method, and cooling zones.
With thermoelectric coolers, there is no noise or vibration. You don’t risk cooling the wine too much and this cooling technology is more energy-efficient than compressor-based refrigeration. Without a compressor, condenser, heat exchangers, etc. in the refrigeration section, these coolers can be much lighter and smaller.
On the negative side, you need to be careful about where you locate a thermoelectric cooler. The cooling performance depends on the ambient conditions, which means that it may struggle to reach the desired temperature when it’s too hot outside. Therefore, these coolers work best if your house isn’t too hot.
Compressor-based coolers work much like your regular fridge. They have much better cooling power so you don’t need to worry about ambient conditions. However, you need to leave some room at the back for proper ventilation.
With the presence of a compressor, a naturally loud machine that compresses air to many times its inlet pressure (there’s a big one in your air conditioner), there is some noise and vibration. The noise is not that important but the vibrations might jeopardize the integrity of your wine. As you might guess, these coolers are heavier and not as energy-efficient.
You have three installation options: built-in, freestanding, and countertop.
Freestanding and built-in models have greater capacity than countertop units. In general, they store 18+ plus bottles. Some models may have a reversible door which makes it easier to locate the cooler. It can be close to the wall on one side and you’ll still be able to open the door.
But if you don’t have any floor space, you might have to go with a countertop cooler either. They usually house 12 bottles and up and the operating cost is lower.
Wine coolers can have a single or multiple cooling zones. Having multiple cooling zones gives you extra versatility since you can set a different temperature for each zone. Most multi-zoned wine coolers will have two cooling zones except the highest-end units.
Two zones are all you need, one for red and one for white. Since white wines are served colder and since cold air moves downward and hot air moves upward, most people would store bottles of white wine in the lower zone. (This is true for a proper energy-efficient refrigerator too – the freezer should be on the bottom and the fridge on top.) But in any event, you won’t be breaking any laws if you decide to put your bottles of white wine in the upper zone.
Countertop models are the smallest so they have the lowest capacity that starts at 6 bottles and up. In general, coolers can be divided into four categories based on bottle capacity.
- 6 to 25 bottles
- 26 to 37 bottles
- 38 to 66 bottles
- 66 to 150 bottles and up
Of course, most coolers are designed for 750ml Bordeaux-style bottles, which measure 2.75” wide and 11.8” tall. Be that as it may, you can always store bigger bottles and even large box wines – just remove a shelf or two.
Heat is the archenemy of wine, so it’s crucial to get a cooler that can provide the right temperature. The optimal temperature is 45°F to 65°F, with 55°F often considered the sweet spot. But then, there are also different temperature recommendations according to the type of wine.
For example, 58°F to 68°F is best for reds and 46°F to 56°F for whites.
Size and Dimension
This is probably something you’d want to do first, especially if you’re going for a built-in model. You do that by figuring out how many bottles of wine you’re looking to store.
For example, a 6-bottle countertop cooler may measure 10 x 14 x 20 inches. On the other hand, 12, 18, and 32-bottle models can be 34” high, 13” to 15” wide, and up to 23” deep.
These are just general size and dimension guidelines. But you already know what to do. Before you make your final decision on a wine cooler, look up the dimensions and measure your space to see if it’ll fit.
Things are pretty straightforward with the warranty. In essence, the longer the better, though the reputation of the manufacturer also comes into play. The lesser manufacturers may go out of business or refuse to honor the warranty.
Most manufacturers offer a one- or two-year limited warranty. This means that you are covered for factory defects and malfunctions that occur with normal use.
You may also get the option to extend the warranty to 3 or 5 years. This is almost always offered by the retailer rather than the manufacturer.
What is a wine cooler?
A wine cooler is a refrigeration unit designed to maintain optimal wine temperature. Unlike regular refrigerators, wine coolers feature glass door and better aesthetics. These coolers come in different sizes, capacities, and a number of cooling zones.
If you are into trivia, there also a cocktail called “wine cooler” that’s a mix of fruit juice and wine.
What temp for wine fridge?
The temperature for a wine fridge starts as low as 45°F and goes all the way up to 68°F. Experts indicate that 55°F is the perfect temperature for chilling pinot, merlot, and chardonnay.
The important thing here is to get a model that allows you to set the temperature. Not all of them come with a thermostat or an adjustable temperature feature.
How to use a wine cooler
First, you need to position the wine cooler in the right place. It needs to be away from humidity and direct sunlight. Set the correct temperature and load up the cooler. The racks are designed such that the cork won’t dry out.
Do I need a dual zone wine cooler?
The optimal temperature range for wine is between 53°F and 57°F. However, red and white wines are served at different temperatures. As a rule, the lighter the wine, the colder it should be served. So, if you want everything to be ready at all times, get a dual-zone wine cooler.
How does a wine cooler work?
A wine cooler works on the principle of refrigeration. Compressor coolers use a cooling loop that includes a compressor, condenser, and refrigerant/air heat exchange.
In contrast, thermoelectric coolers utilize the Peltier effect. As DC current flows through the refrigeration section, it brings with it heat in the direction of flow, going from cold to hot. By way of a fan, the cool air in the cold section is distributed throughout the closed box.
When all is said and done, these are all best wine coolers and your personal best depends on how many bottles of wine you’re planning to store.
All things considered, you might want to have a closer look at the Koldfront TWR247ESS 24-Bottle. It has ample capacity, dual cooling zones, and striking good looks.
If you are looking for something more compact, the NutriChef PKTEWC120 is an excellent option. It features temperature controls, a full-glass door, and silent operation. Best of all, it’s small enough to fit any countertop.