We’ve spoken plenty of times before about how important it is to store your wine properly. In an ideal world, you’d have an entire cellar dedicated to your wines.
But let’s be honest…
That isn’t realistic for the majority of Italian wine lovers out there. Even if you have enough space to build a cellar, you may want to use that space for something that’s a little more practical.
Still, you can’t shake the feeling that the way you store your wines leaves a lot to be desired. The fridge doesn’t exactly offer the level of temperature control that you’re looking for. And while your reds may look okay stored on the shelves of your kitchen, you’re also exposing them to temperature variances that could affect their quality.
You need another solution.
And it’s got to be a practical one because you don’t have room for a cellar.
That’s where a specialised wine cooler could help. These purpose-built refrigerators come in all shapes and sizes. They offer you a place to store your wines in a temperature-controlled environment. And best of all, they’re small enough to fit into most homes.
All you need is a working power supply and a little bit of space.
But that brings us to the key question…
How do you choose the wine cooler that’s right for you?
These are the tips that will ensure you buy a cooler that’s up to the task.
Tip #1 – Check the Bottle Capacity
There’s no point buying a small wine cooler if you want to store dozens of bottles. You’re still going to have a bunch of bottles lying around that you’re not storing as well as you’d like to.
By the same token, there’s no point buying a larger cooler if you’re not going to use all of the space. If you do that, you’re wasting money both on the cooler and the electricity needed to keep it powered up.
The best approach here is to track how many bottles of wine you buy in a month. From there, figure out how long you store them for before drinking. This should help you to come to an approximate number of bottles that you’ll have in your home at any one time. Use that as the baseline when choosing your cooler.
Tip #2 – Keep Noise in Mind
Like any fridge, a wine cooler will generate a certain amount of noise. Your job is to figure out how much noise you’re willing to tolerate. Of course, if the cooler’s out of the way, this isn’t an issue. But if you intend to keep it in the kitchen or the living room, the constant hum of the cooler could become a distraction.
When making your choice, there are two types of systems to keep in mind.
Most wine coolers use a compressor system. The compressor pumps chemicals into the cooler constantly to keep it an appropriate temperature. However, this constant work also causes the cooler to vibrate ever so slightly at times. This is the source of the noise that may bother you.
However, a new technology may eliminate the issue entirely. Some wine coolers us a thermoelectric system. These make no use of chemicals, which means that they don’t need compressors. As a result, the coolers don’t vibrate, which means they don’t generate any noise.
The trade-off here is that this is a newer technology. As such, it’s going to cost a lot more than a cooler that uses a compressor system.
Tip #3 – Choose Between Built-In or Freestanding
A freestanding wine cooler has the benefit of portability. You can place the cooler wherever you might want in the house. Better yet, if you choose to move you can bring the cooler with you. These types of cooler also tend to cost less than the built-in models, which is a massive benefit if you have a budget.
Of course, built-in coolers don’t offer portability. Plus, they’ll require you to undertake some remodelling work in whatever room you want to place them. And once the cooler’s in place it isn’t going anywhere.
So…why would you want one?
They’re extremely attractive and tend to be of a higher quality than freestanding models. If you’re already planning a kitchen remodel, including a built-in cooler may give the kitchen that extra touch of flair that you’re looking for. Plus, the unit will undergo less wear and tear than a freestanding one.
Tip #4 – The Storage Zones
A bog-standard wine cooler doesn’t offer a whole lot of features. You can set a specific temperature and control the humidity inside the cooler. But anything beyond that will be beyond a basic model’s capabilities.
At the other end of the spectrum, you have coolers that offer specific storage zones. Each of these zones comes with its own temperature controls, which means you can store different types of wine in them. This means you can dedicate one section of the cooler to reds and another to whites.
Of course, this added feature comes with a cost.
The key here is to consider the types of wines that you buy.
If you tend to stick to a single type of wine, be it red, white, or even sparkling, a simple cooler should do the trick. But if you love variety in your wine collection, you likely don’t want to have half of it in the cooler and the other half stored somewhere else in the house. In that case, investing in a model with more storage options may be the right choice for you.
The Final Word
A good wine cooler can give you storage options when you don’t have the room to dedicate to a full wine cellar. And seeing as that description fits most people, a wine cooler is an essential addition to any wine lovers home.
With these tips, you should be able to find a cooler that works for you.
After that, it’s just a case of finding Italian wines to stock it with. That’s where we can help you. Browse our catalogue to find thousands of wines and dozens of useful accessories.