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A refrigerator gets the job done when it comes to chilling drinks, but if you’re serious about your wines, beers, and sodas, you know all too well that the precious real estate inside your fridge can quickly disappear—that’s where a dedicated beverage cooler comes in. Not only does having a small, drinks-only refrigerator make you look like you truly have your life together, but it can also be key in terms of temperature control, especially where wines are concerned. So, if you don’t have a wine cellar at your disposal and are running out of room in the family fridge, a cooler is the solution.
Here are the best beverage coolers.
Best Overall: Lanbo Lockable Compact Stainless Steel 18-Bottle/55-Can Drink Refrigerator
If you’re looking for something versatile, efficient, and reliable, this multipurpose beverage center checks all the boxes. With dual-temperature chambers and smart controls, a front vent (so you can build it into cabinetry), security locks, adjustable shelves, an odor-reducing carbon filter, and a high-efficiency compressor with powerful circulation, this cooler ensures that your bottles and cans are safe and sound on their respective sides. Note that the left zone’s temperature ranges from 41 to 64 degrees, while the right zone ranges from 39 to 50 degrees. This is a very quiet machine, but you’ll hear the occasional noise as the compressor works.
Best Budget: Ivation 12-Bottle Single Zone Freestanding Wine Refrigerator
Compact and budget-friendly, this 12-bottle freestanding wine cooler is a straightforward solution for small collections looking to live harmoniously in a single temperature zone. It's perfect if you’re passionate about having a variety of chilled wines on hand at any given time or have a small collection of special cellar-worthy vino. This cooler features a temperature range of 41 to 64 degrees, a double-paned glass door, LED lighting, touchscreen controls, a built-in fan for cooling consistency, and removable racks.
Best for Wine: Kalamera 46-Bottle Compressor Wine Refrigerator Single Zone With Touch Control
For wine lovers missing the luxury of a cellar, a cooler is essential, whether you’re storing reds long-term or just enjoy keeping chilled wines on hand at all times. In order to have both in your home, you’ll want to invest in a dual-zone cooler because different wines are best served at different temperatures.
This top-rated 46-bottle freestanding model is as sleek and functional as they come, featuring a stainless steel construction, door lock, adjustable racks, touchscreen control for both zones, and low-noise machinery. With a front vent, it can even be built into your furniture. The top zone holds 16 bottles and has a temperature range of 40 to 50 degrees, while the bottom zone has enough space for 30 bottles and features a wider temperature range of 50 to 66 degrees.
Best for Cans: Whynter 121-Can Freestanding Beverage Refrigerator
Give your beer and soda cans a functional and aesthetically pleasing home in the form of this freestanding drink cooler, which holds an astonishing 121 12-ounce cans behind tempered double-pane glass for enhanced UV protection. The temperature within its single zone is nice and even thanks to fan circulation, which works in tandem with the machine’s powerful compressor to keep things perfectly cool inside. The temperature can be set between 34 and 43 degrees using touchscreen controls, and you can even lock the door to keep others out.
Best Combo: N'FINITY PRO HDX Wine and Beverage Center by Wine Enthusiast
Get the best of both worlds in the form of this energy-efficient, dual-zone drink cooler with touchscreen controls. With the left side dedicated to wine display and the right concealed by a stainless steel door for keeping soda, beer, and more out of sight, this cooler has space for 35 Bordeaux-style bottles and 90 cans. The left zone ranges 41 to 72 degrees, while the right zone ranges 36 to 72 degrees.
Larger than your average drink cooler, the 30-inch width is nice if you’re looking to fill a wider space beneath a kitchen counter, for example. It uses 25 percent less energy than comparable models by other brands and comes with a three-year cooling factory protection and one-year warranty on parts and labor.
Best Mini: Frigidaire Portable Retro Mini Fridge
If you’re just looking to keep a few cans of soda or beer cold, this is really all you need. The Frigidaire Portable Retro Fridge is amazing for small spaces begging for a pop of color, like studio apartments and dorm rooms. You can even plug it into a car adapter to keep drinks cold on your next beach outing or road trip. With space for just six cans, it’s tiny, yet mighty, operating on a thermoelectric system with cooling temperatures up to 20 degrees below ambient temperature.
Best for Professionals: Transtherm Loft Wine Cabinet
Wine experts don’t mess around with their bottles, and neither does Transtherm, a cult-favorite storage and preservation brand within the wine community. The company's catalog is mostly made up of larger wine fridges, but this cabinet is perfect for home use, especially if your collection needs care that’s a cut above the consumer standard.
These appliances, all of which are made in France, feature both cooling and heating technology to suit a variety of climates, humidity management, automatic temperature control, ventilation, constant circulation, digital temperature display, and more. The Loft Wine Cabinet holds up to 140 Bordeaux-style bottles on six sliding shelves behind a reversible door.
Best Splurge: EuroCave Pure S Wine Cellar
Widely regarded for its durability and efficacy, EuroCave wine cellars are worth the investment if you'll use yours often. This brand has been around since 1976 and is right up there with Transtherm as far as industry favorites and innovation goes. The Pure S wine cellar, available exclusively through Wine Enthusiast, comes with either a glass or opaque door that can be opened from the left or right side. It's energy-efficient and incredibly quiet, too. Touchscreen controls, a humidity alarm system, LED lighting, and a customizable interior help seal the deal.
In general, but especially during very hot weather, you’ll want a place for your wines where the temperature remains stable and offers good humidity control, says Brice Eymard, managing director of the CIVP, an organization representing the wines and appellations of France’s Provence region. This is doubly important for wines that you plan on storing long-term, though having a dedicated environment for something you’d like to drink right away is important, too.
If you’re looking for a versatile and efficient drink cooler, the multipurpose Lanbo Compact Stainless Steel Drink Refrigerator (view at Wayfair) is spacious and quiet with dual-temperature controls. If you prefer something smaller and more affordable, consider the Ivation Freestanding Wine and Beverage Cooler (view at Amazon). While it only has a single temperature zone, it ranges from 41 to 64 degrees and comes with a slew of features, like a built-in fan for cooling consistency.
What to Look for When Buying a Beverage Cooler
Beverage coolers can store different types of beverages from sodas, beer, wine, and more. But if your goal is to store bottles of wine, then look for a cooler that is geared for providing the perfect conditions and temperatures needed for wine. Some coolers can accommodate wine bottles on one side and accommodate cans on the other, offering separate temperature zones for each side.
Think about how many bottles or cans you want a beverage cooler to be able to hold, and make sure you get one large enough to accommodate your needs. Adjustable shelves come in handy to fit different size cans or bottles, too.
Decide how much room you have in your home and where you want to place the beverage cooler. If you want to install it under the counter in the kitchen and build it in, make sure you get one that allows you to do that. Some coolers are freestanding and can go anywhere, while others offer the capability of being built-in or left freestanding.
Is it worth having a beverage cooler?
If you like having your beverages—whether it be wine, beer, sodas, or all of the above—at the proper temperature, then having one of these coolers in your home can be beneficial. Beverage coolers also provide a committed space for your choice of drinks, freeing up refrigerator space for your food items.
Are beverage coolers noisy?
Every beverage cooler is different, and yes, some are noisier than others. You will most likely hear the compressor kick in or the fan running, just like you would with a refrigerator. Compare models and look for noise levels, energy efficiency, and warranty.
What is the best temperature for wine?
White and rosé wines are best kept between 45 F to 50 F, while red wine should be stored at 50 F to 65 F.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Wine writer Céline Bossart doesn’t have the kind of willpower it takes to store wine longer than a few months, but she does try. As someone who has picked up a seltzer habit during quarantine, she knows the importance of keeping drinks at the correct temperature, as you never know when the need for another round will strike.