Wine Fridge Buying Guide
With the growing interest in wine in Malaysia and an increasing number of us prepared to spend a little more on a good vintage, demand for decent storage has been growing steadily. There are several appliances on the market designed to store your wine; here’s a guide to deciding which one to choose
Why is it important to store wine correctly?
- Wine is a constantly developing drink. As such, it reacts well or badly to its surroundings. By keeping them in the correct conditions you’ll ensure the wine matures properly. Too warm and the wine will age faster; too cool and deposits may develop.
- The “golden temperature” for wine is 55°F. Wine should normally be stored between 50-60°F, although a range of 45-65°F is considered acceptable.
- Bottles should also be stored on their side to keep the cork moist and prevent air from entering. Screw cap bottles and sparkling wines can be stored upright.
Things to consider:
- Think about how much you need to store: units which fit under the worktops will carry no more than about 40 bottles – just over 3 cases. If you are serious about buying wine for laying down or as an investment try and go for the largest one you can.
- Also, consider the type of wine you’ll buy: most units are designed to take Bordeaux-size bottles. If your taste is for champagne or Burgundy, with their wider and thicker bottles, you’ll be able to store fewer.
Which wines do you drink?
- Red and white wines require different storage temperatures. You generally store white wine at 10-12°C, and reds at 12-16°C.
- With top-of-the-range models you can have independent temperatures within the unit; so you can keep champagne on the bottom shelf, with your claret on the top shelf. Talk to us.
- Less expensive models may only have one temperature so you’ll have to compromise. Before drinking you may have to bring them up or down to the correct temperature, whereas with variable temperatures the wine is always ready to drink!
Humidity and cooling
- Proper humidity is just as important: too dry and the corks will dry out; too damp and mould could form. Superior models will maintain the correct humidity, as well as keeping the air well ventilated. Some even have charcoal filters, which prevent contamination of the wine.
- Proper ventilation is also important. Fanned cooled refrigeration also ensures that, if you open the door, the fridge quickly recovers its interior temperature and any odours are excluded, so the wine isn’t tainted.
- Entry-level models tend to have fixed shelving. Higher-spec models have shelves you can roll out, making it easier to retrieve and inspect your bottles. Shelves can also be adjustable – useful if you want to store extra bubbly for a party and be made from wood or high-quality chrome.
Where to store it
- As with most fridges, you should try and keep them where the ambient temperature doesn’t fluctuate too much. Wine fridges can cope with temperature changes, but big fluctuations put extra pressure on the unit.
- Check also if the fridge is lockable – to avoid anyone unknowingly helping themselves to your wines!
- If you’re putting your fridge underneath a counter, you must normally allow a gap of 5cm at the top, back and sides of the appliance so that it is properly ventilated. Check the dimensions on our product pages.
- Please ensure you measure up the space available before ordering. When installing your new fridge, keep it upright at all times and allow at least 6 hours for the gases inside to settle before switching on.