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Wine Storage Units

For those with a serious interest in wine, keeping wine where it is convenient to grab a bottle on a whim can be at odds with keeping it properly stored. Bottles down in the wine cellar require a round trip to the basement, but kitchen countertops can be warm and space hard to find. A wine storage unit can solve both problems at once.

Sometimes called mini cellars, units range in size from those holding just a dozen bottles to about four cases are typical, though ones designed for professional, long term storage can hold hundreds of bottles. An ideal size for a normal kitchen would hold about two dozen bottles at near perfect temperatures on either side of 55o F. Roses and fresh young red wines may be served right out of the unit, while a quick selection at the start of meal preparation will allow half an hour for reds to warm up on the table to the proper temperature and whites to chill in the refrigerator.

A wine storage unit is really just a small refrigerator with some change in the range of its cooling temperature. A three case unit is about three-quarters of the size of a dishwasher and will conveniently fit under any counter or into the end of a center island. Prices run from about $300 to $600 depending on capacity and manufacturer, with the smallest units beginning at just over a hundred dollars and running into thousands for the high end models. Like an ordinary refrigerator, wine storage units make some noise while running and require adequate ventilation for the cooling coils on the rear of the unit.

When shopping, look for these features:

  • almost all units have a glass door; look for one with a lock if you have curious toddlers or active pets in the house.

  • check for a bin at the bottom for champagne since the shelves can sometimes by too tight for larger bottles.
  • you'll want removable shelves if you store magnums or other odd and large format bottles to tap into on an impulse.

Where to Shop (click to visit)
EuroCave - Premier Wine Cellars from France

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