The Best Small Wine Fridge

Best-Small-Wine-Fridge

Are you partial to a great bottle of wine but lacking the room to set up a full cellar?

If so, investing in a wine cooler can give you the benefits of a complete cellar in a convenient and portable package.

In our quest for the best small wine fridge for home, we’ll be focusing on coolers with a capacity for 20 bottles or fewer.

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Why do you even need to store wine like this anyway, though? Can’t you just pop it in the regular refrigerator or leave it in a cupboard under the stairs?

Well, you can but you should remember wine has two natural enemies: Temperature & Light

When you’re looking to keep your wine at its very best, you need to pay close attention to both these areas but why is this?

Wine coming into contact with either too much light or an unsuitable temperature means a loss of control, freshness and flavor. The age of the wine also declines rapidly. So, while many families choose the obvious solution of the fridge already in place, this practice will actually lead to a dramatic drop in flavor.

Along with the temperature and lighting angle, by storing your wine in an upright position, the bottle will dry and exposure to the elements can occur. All the best coolers will have your bottle neatly stacked on their sides to avoid this.

OK… With the stage briefly set, we’ll bring you the results of our testing with more than 16 of the best small wine cellars so you can see which sizing would work best for your requirements. As usual, we’ll then round out with some helpful pointers to make your buying decision even easier. So, pour yourself a glass and look forward to that wine tasting even better than ever before!


I. Top 16 Best Small Wine Fridges

1. Our Pick: Ivation Stainless Steel 18-Bottle Wine Fridge (13.5″ x 20″ x 25.4″)

Ivation-Stainless-Steel-18-Bottle-Wine-Fridge

Our overall pick for best small wine fridge is this classic stainless steel effort from Ivation.

Good for 18 bottles of your favorite white or red, this cellar keeps your wine in the optimum temperature band of 54 to 64 degrees Fahrenheit. Integrated fans keep the temperature consistent and even preserving the lifespan of your wine while minimizing oxidization.

A single zone cooler with tempered doors to keep those harmful UV rays out, you’ll get no annoying thrum or vibration.

A combination of slick and rugged stainless steel with classic wooden shelving means this wine fridge looks great while also performing strongly. For a class-leading example of keeping your wine fresher for longer without breaking the bank, this is a solid choice.
Things We Like

  • 3 configurations available including wooden shelves and door lock options
  • Heavily insulated with tempered doors to mitigate humidity
  • Runs whisper-quiet with no menacing vibration

Things We Dislike

  • Some issues with quality control so carefully check contents of package

See Also: Top 10 Best Dual Zone Wine Fridges and Coolers


2. Best Free Standing Small Wine Fridge: hOmelabs 18-Bottle Wine Cooler (14.0 x 20.1 x 25.5 inches)

Best-Free-Standing-Small-Wine-Fridge

Next up is another single-zone 18-bottle cooler in a minimalist shell from hOmelabs.

The measurements are incorrectly listed and the cooler is actually even smaller than advertised so ideal if you’re looking for a truly mini-fridge which punches above its slimline weight.

While capacity is 18 bottles, if you frequently drink wine from bulkier bottles, these will be a snugger fit so think about what you usually drink and bear this in mind.

The chrome racks slip out easily so you won’t have any problem accessing your wine when you need it.

The glass door has a magnetic seal and your wine will be kept between 54 and 66 degrees Fahrenheit giving you the perfect environment for white or red. A subtle LED temperature gauge lets you keep your eye on this at a glance.
Things We Like

  • Striking yet understated aesthetic
  • Sliding chrome racks to promote easy access
  • Large enough to house 18 bottles yet compact enough not to dominate

Things We Dislike

  • A tight fit with fatter wine bottles

See Also: Top 8 Best Under Counter Wine Coolers and Fridges


3. Best Dual Zone Small Wine Fridge: Wine Enthusiast Silent Wine Fridge (20.2 x 9.9 x 37.5 inches)

Best-Dual-Zone-Small-Wine-Fridge

One of the inbuilt flaws with many small wine coolers is the tedious vibration and noise that can emanate from them. Wine Enthusiast addresses this issue head-on delivering a silent and remarkably energy-efficient fridge.

This fridge is freestanding and measures up at 37 ½ x 10 x 20 ¼ inches so make sure you’ve got the space to accommodate.

Sized to house regular Bordeaux bottles, you can slip the shelves out if you need a home for bigger bottles and you don’t fancy cramming them in or tearing the labels.

With dual zones, you can keep both white and red wine at exactly the right temperature to ensure your evening glass goes down a treat.
Things We Like

  • Dual-zone giving you the latitude to store a range of wine at optimum temperature
  • 7 pull-out shelves give you more leeway for storing larger bottles if required
  • Super-simple and intuitive interface

Things We Dislike

  • A larger, freestanding unit that won’t work as well in smaller apartments

4. Best Built-In Small Wine Fridge: EdgeStar 18-Bottle Built-In Wine Fridge (22.6 x 11.6 x 34.2 inches)

Best-Built-In-Small-Wine-Fridge

EdgeStar are a huge presence in the wine cooler vertical and this 18-bottle beast is enough to keep a modest collection in peak condition.

Although tall, this cooler is slim and you can choose to integrate it into your kitchen units or keep the flexibility of a freestanding configuration.

With a broader range of temperatures than most of the competition, store your prized wine between 40 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Circulation fans and a compressor work together to ensure consistency once you’ve got your preferred temperature dialed in.

The glass is fully protected from any rogue rays penetrating and the blue LEDs set off your collection wonderfully.

For a versatile and solidly built wine cooler from a brand you can trust, this is our pick for best built-in wine fridge.
Things We Like

  • Internal LEDs for a sleek look
  • Reversible glass doors with tempered glass
  • Either leave as a freestanding unit or build into your kitchen

Things We Dislike

  • Relatively sizeable so better for larger kitchens

5. Best Budget: Magic Chef 6-Bottle Small Wine Fridge (20.1 x 10.9 x 15 inches)

Magic-Chef-6-Bottle-Small-Wine-Fridge

Are you operating on a tighter budget? If so, Magic Chef offers a compact and affordable 6-bottle beauty so you don’t need to sacrifice wine storage or spend a fortune.

Thermoelectric cooling gives you exactly the environment you need for your wine but think carefully about placement. The ambient temperature will affect cooling so don’t put this is a hot area.

You can slide out the chrome racks giving you more freedom of access and the ability to store larger bottles if required.

While this is only a baby cooler, you’ll still have room for a half-dozen bottles kept in their prime for as long as you need them.

With easily adjustable temperature over a respectable range, the Magic Chef is a great example of good things coming in small packages.
Things We Like

  • Super-small footprint so pop this cooler just about anywhere
  • Thermoelectric cooling for complete consistency
  • Removable chromed racks for your convenience

Things We Dislike

  • Temperature contingent on ambient temperature in your home

6. Haier 12-Bottle Wine Fridge (20.3 x 26 x 9.9 inches)

Haier-12-Bottle-Wine-Fridge

If you’re looking to make a real statement with your wine fridge, treat yourself to this blacked-out Haier.

A dual-zone environment gives you greater freedom to store a range of assorted wines. You’ll get a couple touchscreens you can control independently.

The upper compartment has a temperature range of 46 to 66 degrees Fahrenheit while you can manipulate the lower section between 54 and 66 degrees Fahrenheit.

6 racks stretch across the full width of this cooler. The unit measures up at 20 x 26 x 9 ¾ inches and weighs fully 30 pounds so it’s no compact or lightweight fridge. In return for this bulk, you’ll get a first-class method of safeguarding your wine that looks great too and will set off any kitchen a treat.

While the Haier is not particularly cheap, if you’ve got a more elastic budget and you fancy investing in the best, we’re confident you won’t be disappointed. Your guests won’t be either when you uncork the wine and it tastes even better than they could have hoped for.
Things We Like

  • Design-driven but not a case of form over function
  • Dual-zone with a pair of independent touchscreens
  • Striking curved door with blackout glass

Things We Dislike

  • Reasonably expensive but still great value

7. Koldfront 18-Bottle Wine Fridge (22.2 x 14 x 25.6 inches)

Koldfront-18-Bottle-Wine-Fridge

As long as you’ve got the spare room, this beast of an 18-bottle cooler is a superb addition to any wine fan’s kitchen.

Kiss goodbye to furled and damaged labels or wine past its best in no time. If you drink standard-sized Bordeaux bottles, slip them in fuss-free. If you prefer larger bottles from time to time, all you need to do is slide out the shelving to accommodate them.

A dual-zone cooler, you can store bottles in the upper section anywhere from 54 to 66 degrees Fahrenheit while those down below are good anywhere from 46 through 66 degrees Fahrenheit. This affords you the ultimate flexibility in a single hard-hitting unit.

With subtle LEDs to pick off your collection without delivering too much unwanted light, this wine cooler rolls great looks and high-class performance into one attractive bundle so what are you waiting for?
Things We Like

  • Bulky unit capable of housing 18 bottles
  • Utilitarian design finished in black and stainless steel
  • Soft interior LEDs so you can display your bottles without impairing the storage environment

Things We Dislike

  • Too large to work well in smaller kitchens

8. EdgeStar 7-Bottle Built-In Wine Fridge (20.4 x 5.8 x 34.3 inches)

EdgeStar-7-Bottle-Built-In-Wine-Fridge

We’ve got another EdgeStar up next, this time a smaller integrated cooler good for up to 7 bottles of your preferred tipple.

Super-slim, this fridge can be built into tight spaces fuss-free so it makes a great asset if you’ve got a small kitchen but won’t compromise on wine storage.

With the shelving intact, you can slip in 7 bottles of regular Bordeaux. If you lay in a bulkier bottle for a party, you simply take out the shelf to make room.

As with all EdgeStar coolers, the fan and compressor work in harmony to serve up a quiet, vibration-free and consistent environment so your wine remains lip-smackingly good for longer.

Understated internal LEDs give just enough light for you to see your modest collection at a glance but not so much as to impair the wine.
Things We Like

  • Occupies a tiny footprint so ideal for smaller apartments
  • Wide band of temperatures from 40 through 65 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Remove a shelf to stash fewer larger bottles

Things We Dislike

  • Not large enough to house bigger wine collections

9. Magic Chef 12-Bottle Wine Cooler (22.3 x 16.9 x 21.8 inches)

Magic-Chef-12-Bottle-Wine-Cooler

Next up is another Magic Chef model, this time double the size and good for a full dozen bottles of your favorite beverage.

Even though you’ve got space for ample wine, the cooler measures just 14.2 x 19 x 20.1 inches so you won’t need a hulking space to house it.

Thermoelectric cooling ensures you won’t get any of that enervating thrum and vibration that often mars low quality wine fridges. There’s no need to suffer with Magic Chef.

Tweak your desired storage climate from 54 through 66 degrees Fahrenheit to make certain any type of wine you have on hand is kept at its absolute best.

The Magic Chef looks great as well as delivering on the performance front so it makes a fine addition to any kitchen and slots in neatly with just about any design scheme from minimalist to traditionalist.
Things We Like

  • Hits the sweet spot of capacity and streamlined sizing
  • Broad temperature band for your convenience
  • Intuitive and crisp digital panel

Things We Dislike

  • Some bottles can feel like quite a tight fit

10. Whynter 20-Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler (20.5 x 15.8 x 22 inches)

Whynter-20-Bottle-Thermoelectric-Wine-Cooler

At the upper threshold of what can be considered a small wine fridge, this 20-bottle behemoth from Whynter.

As with any larger cooler, you’ll need a good chunk of space on tap. As long as you’ve got that covered, you can keep a bulging collection of fine wine so it’s always ready to drink and will stay in peak condition for longer.

Build quality is first-rate. The black cabinet is rock-solid while the stainless shelving is rugged enough to give you years of faithful service.

While this thermoelectric wine cooler is certainly not cheap, all you’ll need to do is forego a bottle or two and you’ll have an investment capable of giving you a return on that investment for years to come.
Things We Like

  • Optimum climate maintained with smoked tinted glass
  • Adjustable internal LED lights so you can see your bottles at a glance when required
  • Stainless steel shelving built to stay the distance

Things We Dislike

  • Bulky and costly so not for everyone

11. Ivation 12-Bottle Wine Cooler (9.9″ x 19.7″ x 25″)

Ivation-12-Bottle-Wine-Cooler

A larger freestanding unit up next, this Ivation can take 12 bottles and runs extremely quietly in operation.

As your wines go through the aging process, you can switch up the temperature to suit. From 50 on through 64 degrees Fahrenheit, you can create the perfect microclimate for your wines throughout their lifetime.

You’ll get a tech-driven fridge that’s a dream to use with the digital panel allowing you to manipulate the temperature at the push of a button.

As well as a perfect environment for your wine, you’ll also have the ideal noise-free environment for yourself.

The crowning glory is a 100% satisfaction guarantee but we’re pretty sure you won’t be calling that in once you’ve experience the Ivation in action. What’s not to love?
Things We Like

  • Adjust temperature through a wide range
  • Soft-touch digital controls make operation a cinch
  • No compressor keeps vibration to an absolute minimum

Things We Dislike

  • Not a compact cooler

12. NewAir 12-Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler (14 x 19.5 x 19 inches)

NewAir-12-Bottle-Thermoelectric-Wine-Cooler

As we edge toward the end of our hunt for the best small wine fridge, NewAir’s 12-bottle model rates an honorable mention.

This version houses 12 bottles but if you’ve got a more robust collection, choose from larger unit capable of holding 18 or even 28 bottles. NewAir really deliver something for everyone.

By the standards of wine coolers, this thermoelectric model runs particularly quietly. The tech behind the cooling system keeps vibration at an all-time low, too.

As with all the best mini wine coolers, you’ll get low-brightness LEDs so you can see your bottles without contaminating the environment with too much light.

A digital display lets you see what you need at a glance and the simple, push-button operation is a pleasure to use even if you’re not the biggest tech-fan.
Things We Like

  • Push-button controls to simplify temperature adjustment
  • Kicks out only 25 decibels so remarkably quiet
  • Cool blue LEDs display your collection for guests without introducing too much light

Things We Dislike

  • Some reported complaints about lifespan

13. Avanti 12-Bottle Thermoelectric Wine Cooler (20.2 x 10 x 25.2 inches)

Avanti-12-Bottle-Thermoelectric-Wine-Cooler

Another 12-bottle cooler up next in the shape of this tall and slimline Avanti.

If you’re looking for a budget wine storage solution, this is not for you. If, on the other hand, you want to keep your precious wine at its finest and you don’t mind digging deeper, what do you get for your money?

Running practically whisper-quiet, you’ll also enjoy vibration-free storage preserving the integrity of your wine without agitating the sediment.

Curved glass doors add an injection of class and this wine fridge wouldn’t look out of place in a small bar.
Things We Like

  • Automatic defrosting for your complete convenience
  • No vibration to disturb you or rattle that sediment in your wine
  • Large enough for a mid-sized collection but small enough to fit in compact kitchens

Things We Dislike

  • Extremely expensive

14. Ivation 18-Bottle Dual Zone Wine Cooler (13.5″ x 20″ x 25.4″)

Ivation-18-Bottle-Dual-Zone-Wine-Cooler

If you’re a real wine fanatic but you don’t have the space for a full-bore cellar, this 18-bottle cooler is the next best thing.

While this is by no means a dainty cooler, in return for those extra pounds and inches you’ll get a hard-hitting unit capable of keeping a larger wine collection in peak shape.

A pair of temperature zones allows you to segregate your wine. You can fine-tune this throughout its lifetime so you can work with the aging process and enjoy your prized wine tasting just the way it should do.

Design is impeccable. The smoked glass doors are also robustly insulated so you’ll enjoy the optimum storage space without compromising aesthetics.
Things We Like

  • Dual-zone cooler to cover all storage bases
  • Insulation and smoked doors help keep humidity right down
  • External touch screen and internal LEDs complete a sleek package

Things We Dislike

  • Fairly pricey and occupies a substantial footprint but in return you’ll be spoiled for storage

15. Westinghouse 8-Bottle Wine Cooler (20.2 x 10 x 18.4 inches)

Westinghouse-8-Bottle-Wine-Cooler

A diminutive and minimalist cooler from Westinghouse, if you’re partial to the occasional glass of wine and you don’t have a sprawling collection to cater for, this is well worth your further investigation.

Slip in 8 bottles and keep them perfectly positioned and also cooled to the exact temperature you need with ease. If you’re sold on this model but want a little extra room, there’s a 10-bottle or 12-bottle variant to supersize your purchase.

While flagged ultra-quiet, this cooler is rated at 38 decibels so it kicks out a little more racket than some of the other fridges we looked at.

For anyone looking for a wine fridge with design uppermost but no compromise made in terms of performance or durability, this Westinghouse is a smart choice.
Things We Like

  • Great combination of compact design and adequate storage space
  • Hinge and handle hidden from sight to enhance the clean lines of this fridge

Things We Dislike

  • A little noisier than some of the competition

16. Vinotemp 2-Bottle Open Wine Cooler

Vinotemp-2-Bottle-Open-Mini-Wine-Cooler

Last but certainly not least, we’ve got something for a casual wine drinker looking for a scaled-down storage solution that works.

A freestanding unit that makes a real conversation piece for your guests, you can slip in a brace of bottles and keep the temperature regulated a treat.

Despite very limited capacity, this cooler is extremely expensive so it’s not suitable for bargain hunters or anyone looking to stash lots of wine.

If, though, you just like the odd glass and you insist on your wine being properly stored, we can’t recommend the Vinotemp strongly enough.
Things We Like

  • Wide range of temperatures from 41 through 66 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Space-saving model perfect for small kitchens
  • Sleek touchscreen interface

Things We Dislike

  • Obviously no use for bigger wine collections so consider your intended usage carefully

OK, with our reviews wrapped, we’ll round out with some handy pointers to help you simplify your buying decision and the answers to 5 of the most frequently asked questions…


II. Wine Fridge Buying Guide

Wine-Fridge-Buying-Guide

A wine fridge might seem like a very simple product but you’ve got a few elements to consider so you get the one most suited to your needs.

Capacity

To meet our criteria of a small wine fridge, we imposed an upper limit of 20 bottles.

You’ll find coolers capable of accommodating anywhere from 2 to 18 bottles as standard.

This part of your decision should obviously and firmly be based on the amount of wine you keep on hand at home.

Don’t overlook, either, the space you’ll need to place your cooler. It’s senseless looking for the biggest model if it will dominate a cramped kitchen.

Temperature

Look for a cooler offering as wide a band of temperatures as possible.

Range usually varies from the mid-40s up through the mid-60s.

This variation allows you to keep your wine at precisely the temperature you need throughout its aging cycle so it always remains at its finest.

Equally as important as this breadth of temperature is the accuracy…

Accuracy and Consistency of Thermostat

In any case where cooler thermostats seem to run hot or are in any way unreliable, we’ve flagged that for you so you can buy with your eyes wide open.

You should consider testing your cooler with an external thermometer after purchase so you can be absolutely confident of the quoted temperatures being delivered.

Read plenty of honest user reviews and focus on consistency and accuracy to pick up on any potential red flags with the model you have in mind.

Single-Zone or Dual-Zone?

If you only store one type of wine, a single-zone cooler is more than fit for purpose.

For anyone frequently storing both red and white wines, it pays to consider investing in a dual-zone fridge so you can cater for both in a single unit.

Understandably, dual-zone coolers cost a little more so make sure this is something you actually need rather than paying a senseless premium.

Noise and Vibration

Look for decibel ratings to give you a clear picture of how noisy the fridge you’re looking at is in operation.

While noise can be merely annoying, if the cooler vibrates too much, this can interfere with the wine bottle and agitate the sediment impairing the end result in your glass.

Look for a quiet and vibration-free model to give you everything you need.

User-Friendliness

Take your level of tech-savviness into account and make certain the wine fridge you’re looking at won’t leave you baffled or intimidated.

All the coolers we looked at were extremely user-friendly so we’ve done the hard work for you!

Design

To tail off, make sure you like the look of the cooler and that it will gel with your design scheme.

This should not be the prevailing or deciding factor in your buying decision but design certainly counts.


III. FAQs

1) What temperature should I set my wine fridge at?

Optimum temperature varies depending on the type of wine. For white wine, shoot for anywhere from 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit (4 to 10°C). You should also take care to chill white wine for fully 90 minutes before serving. With red wine, store between 50 and 66 degrees Fahrenheit (10 to 18°C). You need refrigerate red wine for just 20 minutes before drinking.

2) What temperature should you drink wine at?

Serving temperature for wine differs slightly from storage temperature. White wine responds best to drinking anywhere from 49 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit (10 to 13°C). If you’re partial to a drop of red, serve and drink between 62 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit (16.5 to 20°C).

3) How long does wine last in the fridge unopened?

To enjoy it at its best, unopened white wine should not be refrigerated at all until no more than 1 to 2 days before drinking. It’s not as much a question of how long it will last as how long it will remain at its best so use your cooler to far better effect and make sure it’s stored at the temperature you need to bring the most out of it.

4) Is it true I shouldn’t chill red wine?

No, this is an enduring myth. See the preferred temperature range above and enjoy your red wine as it should be rather than leaving it uncooled.

5) Why should I store wine on its side?

Once the cork starts to dry out, air will come inside the bottle. This is the last thing you want. By storing wine on its side in a wine cooler rather than upright in the fridge, you’ll keep the cork in contact with the wine and prevent this from happening.


IV. Conclusion

We trust by now you’re sold on the virtues of wine coolers.

If you’ve got any intention of accumulating a modest collection of your favorite reds and whites, you owe it to yourself to invest in one of these small wine fridges. You’ll end up keeping your wine fresher for longer while also simplifying access no end.

Whether you want something small enough for just a handful of bottles or large enough to build into your kitchen and stash 18 bottles, there’s something for everyone in our collection of coolers. We’ve tried to hit all price points and sizings so there’s no excuse not to grab something suitable.

Don’t forget to bookmark our site and come back soon! We’re just finishing up with our latest batch of testing and we’ll be delighted to report our findings in the next few days.

The Best Small Wine Fridge
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