It's the time of year when shopping for the best wine cooler (or wine fridge) for a kitchen, utility, bedroom(?) becomes a thing. It doesn’t matter if you like red, sparkling, a nice chilled white, or all three – for anyone who takes their wine seriously – a home wine cooler is certainly something to consider, especially with Christmas just around the corner.
It might seem like an indulgence, but with countertop models on the market for under £100, the optimal bottle is more accessible than you think. We advise having a strict budget in mind and thinking about the capacity you would like the cooling appliance to be before running away with the excitement of buying a wine fridge –there's a lot of impressive features out there so it would be easy to get carried away! To help, we review the best wine fridges at the best prices below.
Prefer a fridge freezer so you can store your foods and drinks in the same place? We get it: check out our best fridge freezer guide for more top buys.
The best wine coolers for 2020
Our top option for the best wine cooler is this example from John Lewis & Partners. It has all the features we are looking for to keep the wine chilled, it even looks good.
Large capacity with variable temperature zones
Capable of holding up to 38 bottles, this wine cooler will keep you Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc suitably chilled. The two temperature zones are individually controlled so your different wines can be set at the desired temperature.
To keep it cool inside, cool air is circulated around the cabinet ensuring your wine is at the optimum temperature at all times.
Behind the stainless steel exterior are five sliding shelves and one base shelf so you can make best use of the space. It also has a smart looking LED temperature display so you can always see what temperature each zone is set to.
This slim wine cooler is our runner-up and a compact choice for fitting into a small kitchen design, but stylish enough to be a talking point, should you wish.
Suitable for holding up to 12 bottles of wine (or bubbly) across five shelves, this wine cooler will make a big impact when up on the counter top.
It has an interior light and elegantly curved glass door, so that you can keep an eye on your collection (and show it off to your guests) and simple touch controls to easily adjust the temperature.
A very good buy for kitchens on the small side, and for a reasonable price, too.
With it's impressive energy rating, this wine cellar from LG gets our vote for the best wine cooler for energy efficiency. It's also got some other impressive and very cool features which would be great for your household, if you have the budget.
A good fit
You'll be able to fit up to 65 bottles of your finest pinot or merlot in this one, across five shelves. It's also got a couple of drawers underneath which could be used to store more than just alcoholic beverages.
The temperature inside is accommodating, too. It has three zones which can be independently controlled with temperatures ranging between 5 - 18°C.
With InstaView you can just knock the door twice for the cellar to light up. This means that you'll be able to look inside without opening the door.
Place it anywhere
Behind the black mirrored glass are UV control shields. It keeps heat and ultraviolet rays at bay so it can be placed in direct sunlight or in a dull corner, without causing any harm to your face tipple.
This wine cooler gets our vote for the best budget buy. Why? Because it's less than £80. At this price it's a steal which will keep your wine, and other drinks, suitably chilled throughout any special occasion.
It has a capacity of 15 bottles so you can stay stocked up with your fave tipple. And you can adjust the temperature between 5 and 18°C using a handy dial.
One thing to note is that there is just the one temperature zone so you won't be able to have certain areas of the cooler more chilly than others, but at this price we feel that it is so worth it.
You can even position the wine fridge anywhere in the home thanks to a reversible door.
Ideal for sitting on the counter top, this wine cooler will hold enough wine for small gatherings and/or for your very own mini bar at home. It's also got a very reasonable price tag on it, too.
Space and flexibility
You'll be able to get 12 bottles of your favourite wines in the wine cooler. It's also a good option if you need to free up space in the main fridge for stocking up on nibbles for special occasions. The temperature inside ranges from 8 to 18 degrees which means that can easily adjust the climate to suit your white wines or champagnes.
The reversible door means that it can be placed on the left or right side, so you can place it anywhere you like.
Available in a black or stainless steel finish, this wine cooler will look great on the kitchen counter top or within arms reach of where the entertainment is unfolding. It also has a handy LED display which lets you keep an eye on how cool it is for your beverages are served suitably chilled.
How to choose the best wine cooler
When choosing a wine cooler fridge there's a lot of things to consider – let alone the type of wine you want to drink – before parting with your cash.
They're not for laying down wine
It’s worth noting that wine fridges aren’t intended for long-term storage – a specialist wine cabinet or cellar is far more suitable if you’re particularly serious about collecting – but rather for keeping a select few bottles to hand.
How much space do you have?
After budget, the next big thing to consider is your kitchen’s layout. If you have a large kitchen with space to spare, a freestanding full-height wine fridge looks very striking and has a larger capacity than an under-the-counter model, ideal for serious wine-drinkers who like to keep a variety of bottles to hand. Under-counter fridges, meanwhile, often come in slimline designs specifically made to meet space concerns, making them suited to small modern flats and crowded kitchens.
Think temperature zones
Finally, for maximum versatility, you may want to look for a wine fridge with more than one temperature zone, which means you can meet the needs of two or more different types of wine at once using targeted climate control. As with many things, the more zones a fridge features, the higher price it can command, so we’ve included a mix of one- and two-zoned fridges in our buying guide to suit a range of budgets.
What is the best wine cooler?
To recap... the best wine cooler (in our opinion) is the John Lewis & Partners JLWF608 38 Bottle Under Counter Wine Cooler. It has everything we are looking for (apart from the included wine) which looks great and isn't too pricey, either.
Features such as the two zones which can have variable temperatures are the standout point here which will mean that you can stock up to 38 bottles of wine or champers, or both, and keep them suitably chilled.
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