Refrigerators can be a place where you can store your wine bottles, but it is not ideal because there are other food items in it which may affect the flavor of your wine. Also, the fluctuating temperature of the refrigerator has a bad effect on wine quality.
So, if you are starting to get into wine collecting, then, it’s probably time for you to invest in a wine cooler. However, knowing how cold does a wine cooler get is also a consideration because different types of wine need to be stored at specific temperatures.
How Cold Does a Wine Cooler Get: The General Temperature Range
Although there are many different kinds of wine coolers, how low and high their temperature can get is usually the same. In general, wine coolers can get as cold as 40 degrees Fahrenheit and as warm as 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Such is maintained because, as mentioned above, wine is very sensitive to temperature fluctuations and it is a must that they are kept at a specific and constant temperature to make sure their flavor is protected.
Types of Wine Coolers
Single-zone or dual-zone wine coolers
Single-zone coolers are designed for storing one type of wine only which is either red or white. On the other hand, dual-zone wine coolers are for storing both red and white wine bottles because red wine needs to be kept at a higher temperature and white at a lower range. With that said, one zone is for white wine, and one is for red wine.
Freestanding Wine Coolers
Freestanding wine coolers are for enthusiasts who are starting to build a collection and for those who like serving wine a lot. They can store as many as 50 bottles and are very compact, so people who live in small apartments love this because they can easily fit in small spaces.
Nonetheless, since most of them emit heat at the back to keep the inside cold, they cannot be kept inside a cabinet.
Countertop Wine Coolers
These wine coolers, as their name implies, are designed to be put on top of your countertop, whether in the kitchen or your home bar. They are specially designed for maintaining the right temperature of wine that you intend to serve. Hence, they are not ideal for wine preservation.
Integrated Wine Coolers
These wine coolers are designed to be built inside your cabinetry which is why wine lovers who are also concerned about design prefer this. They can keep 50 or more bottles and are dual zone so you can store both red and white wine bottles in them.
How Cold Does a Wine Cooler Get: Setting the Right Temperature
Setting the right temperature and making sure they stay that way in your wine cooler is very important because fluctuating and the wrong temperature will result in bland flavors. Obviously, you wouldn’t want that to happen especially when your collection is pricey.
Fortunately, adjusting the temperature on most modern wine coolers is a no-brainer because they come with digital touchscreen displays. What you just need to do is press the buttons to set the right temperature depending on what type of wine bottles you are storing.
Ideal Storage Temperature (in Fahrenheit)
- Sparkling wine: 50 to 55
- Tart white wine: 48 to 52
- Full-bodied white wine: 58 to 62
- Rich red wine: 63 to 68
- Light red wine: 60 to 65
If you want to get more specific (in Fahrenheit)
- Champagne, Cava, Asti, Prosecco, Sparkling: 45 degrees
- Muscat, Rosé, Riesling: 47 degrees
- Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon: 50 degrees
- Chardonnay, Viognier, White Burgundy, Chablis: 53 degrees
- Pinot Noir, Beaujolais, Barbera, Grenache: 55 degrees
- Zinfandel, Chianti, Red Burgundy: 58 degrees
- Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec: 62 degrees
- Shiraz, Syrah, Bordeaux: 65 degrees
Ideal Serving Temperature (in Fahrenheit)
To always ensure that you get the full flavor whenever you drink a glass of wine, it is essential for it to be served at the perfect temperature and they are as follows:
- Sparkling Wine: 40 to 50 degrees
- Rose and White Wine: 50 to 60 degrees
- Red Wine: 60 to 70 degrees
Wine Storage: Other Factors Affecting Quality
Aside from temperature, there are also other factors that need to be considered in order for your wine to be preserved well and they are the following.
Wine bottle storage orientation
Storing wine bottles in an upright position is not ideal because cork tends to dry out in the long run which can shrink it. That is why it is a must to store them sideways to keep the cork wet. This position is also more space-efficient.
However, if your wine bottles are covered with screw caps or plastic corks, then, they could be stored in a vertical position.
It is advisable that wine bottles be stored in a place where there is little to no vibration because this can disturb the sediments in the wine which can make it gritty. So, if you have not been blessed to have a nice basement cellar, choose a wine cooler that does not vibrate when cooling.
An example of such is thermoelectric coolers; these wine coolers are energy efficient, quiet, and produces none, if not, very little vibration.
You may have observed that most wine manufacturers choose to age wine in barrels that are stored in cellars. This is because sunlight can cause the premature aging of wine and in the long run destroys its flavor.
In addition, lighting such as fluorescent can also affect the flavor of wine, so it’s better to buy bottles that are tinted. Nevertheless, when wine bottles are stored in wine coolers, you should not worry since they have LED lighting, which is perfectly safe.
A certain amount of humidity is needed to prevent cork enclosures from drying out because even if they are stored sideways, only one side is getting moisture from the wine. Additionally, too much humidity can destroy wine labels which will make the identification of each bottle impossible.
The perfect amount of humidity is about 70 to 75 percent which can be adjusted depending on the wine cooler you are using.
We cannot stress enough that storing your wine bottles at the perfect temperature is a necessity because this greatly affects the flavor and quality of the wine. Keeping your wine bottles at a temperature higher than 77 degrees Fahrenheit will “cook” the wine which will result in a raisiny taste. On the other hand, too low of a temperature will cause the slow aging of wine.
Since wine coolers can go as low as 40 degrees Fahrenheit and the temperature can be adjusted to a higher level, you can store and serve all kinds of wine without hassle. Nevertheless, you just have to keep in mind that temperature is not the only factor that can affect the quality of your wine.