Having a little extra refrigerated space is a perfect complement to any room of the house. Whether you store soda cans, wine bottles or both, there is a unit for you that will save space in your main refrigerator and to keep your beverages at arm’s reach.
What’s the difference between a beverage center, compact refrigerator and undercounter wine cooler? And which one will work best for you? Pop open your favorite beverage and sit back as we answer all your questions about beverage centers.
We’ll start simple. The main job of a compact refrigerator is to keep temperature at 33 or 34 degrees. They normally are 18” or 24” wide and usually stand 34” high, which is standard countertop height.
The most notable difference is between freestanding refrigerators and undercounter refrigerators. Undercounter refrigerators are built-in under a counter and give you a seamless look. These units are vented through the front for heat to easily escape. Freestanding refrigerators can be placed throughout the room but needs at least 2” of space on each side if located under a counter because these units vent from the back. The same can be said about freestanding beverage centers and wine units. A quick and easy way to know if a unit is freestanding or built-in is to look at the sides of the refrigerator, if the sides are finished then it is a freestanding unit.
A compact refrigerator is the perfect option if you’re only storing soda, water, beer or snacks. There are plenty of other features like ice makers, freezers and crisper drawers you can find in compact refrigerators.
If your main goal is to keep drinks cold just about any model of compact refrigerator will get the job done.
KitchenAid is the kitchen expert. Starting with their first stand mixer in 1919, KitchenAid now makes just about anything a kitchen needs. Their 24” undercounter refrigerator gives you 4.9 extra cu. ft. of refrigeration. The glass shelves and LED interior looks great and the unit runs just as well!
Whirlpool is the largest major appliance manufacturer in the world. Their 24” compact refrigerator has a large 5.6 cu. ft. capacity, freeing up tons of space in your main refrigerator. The glass shelves are adjustable and extra door bins allow you to store all types of food and beverages.
There are tons of wine coolers on the market at every price point. Wine cellars are made to store wine and keep temperatures between 40 and 52 degrees. A couple terms you should be aware of before buying a wine cooler include compressor, duel zone and humidifier.
A compressor is the motor of the wine cooler. Like any motor, the compressor creates vibrations which can be harmful to long term wine storage as the sediment in your wine is disturbed. Top of the line wine coolers have protections to prevent the vibrations from reaching the wine.
Many wine units claim they are duel zone, but a true duel zone wine cooler has two separate compartments that can be independently controlled. Duel zone wine storage is ideal if you store both red and white wine for long periods of time. For the more casual wine drinker a single zone unit will work just fine. Because the cooling element is on the bottom of most units, you will still have a temperature fluctuation of 12 degrees or so. The bottom will be around 40 degrees, ideal for white wine storage, and the top will hover around 52 degrees, which is perfect for red wine storage.
Another feature of most wine coolers is the built-in humidifier. For long term wine storage, you should keep the humidity of the unit at 70%. This keeps the cork moist and prevents air from spoiling your wine.
For wine enthusiasts, a quality wine cooler is a must.
U-Line manufacturers premium undercounter refrigerators, wine cooler and ice makers. U-Line’s 3000 Series has four distinct temperature modes for beverages, sparking wine, white wine and red wine. This 24” model holds 43 bottles but can be purchased in larger or smaller options as well. The rubber mounted compressor and true duel zones ensures that your wine collection will keep for a long time.
Sub-Zero has over 80 years of experience and pioneered the science of home refrigeration. Their undercounter wine unit has a true duel zone for optimal white and red wine storage. Sub-Zero wine units have smooth gliding racks and UV-resistant bronze-tinted glass to prevent light exposure. Your wine collection will last if stored in a Sub-Zero wine cooler.
A beverage center is the best of both worlds. They are designed to store both cold drinks and wine. Smaller units will hold 50 or 60 cans, mid-sized units hold around 80 cans and larger units can hold 150 cans or more. No matter the size, the extra storage will save a ton of room in your main refrigerator.
Beverage centers don’t have a humidifier so don’t store your wine for any longer than a few weeks. Some high-end beverage centers have duel zone temperature control, meaning you can have ice cold beer and perfectly chilled wine coming from the same unit.
Find your next beverage center.
True refrigerators have been handcrafted in America since 1945. Their residential beverage center has precise temperature management with easy-to-use digital controls. One of our favorite features of this unit is the TrueFlex shelving. The shelves can easily be converted to store wine bottles giving you tons of flexibility while filling your unit.
Perlick has been around since 1917 so to say they know what they’re doing is an understatement. Their signature series beverage center has two temperature zones. The wine zone can be set between 45-65 degrees and the refrigerated zone can get as cold as 33 degrees. Perlick’s RAPIDcool boosts some series power, helping to cool the unit twice as fast as any other brand and to keep a precise, consistent temperature.
Contact us to find your next compact refrigerator, wine cooler or beverage center!