I suspect, if you are anything like I was a few years ago, you probably stored, both, your alcoholic drinks and wines on a shelf in the kitchen or dining room. And probably stashed drinks that need cooling in an ordinary refrigerator. Not only does this make no sense, it adds nothing to your home style. A pantry isnt the best place to serve drinks from after all. The right bar furniture or the correct wine and drinks storage makes all the difference, in both, displaying your home, and storing your drinks in the right way.
Whether you are a wine lover or love to entertain, the right bar cabinet can really add that special touch to your home.
Let’s take a look at why having a wine / bar cabinet is such a great idea as well as explore buying tips and where to find the best deals on wine and bar furniture.
Understanding the Types of Wine and Liquor Cabinets
Wine Bar Cabinet, Wine Coolers, Drinks Cabinets, Liquor Cabinets Whats the Difference?
Unfortunately different people have different names for the same product. On the other hand there are a range of products that are for very specific purposes. A liquor cabinet for example isn’t really the same as a wine cabinet – and a wine cabinet isn’t the same thing necessarily as a wine cooler cabinet. Add to the mix that there are also wine cooler bars, wine fridges, beer fridges, liquor bars and wet bars and dry bar cabinets, and you have a complete mix.
The key is to understand one of three things:
- Do you need to keep your alcohol cool?
- Do you need a display that is both functional and aesthetic?
- What alcohol are you storing?
Wine for example needs to be stored at the right temperature. And for that some sort of cooling cabinet or fridge like behaviour with temperature control is necessary. Most liquor doesn’t need to be stored in cooling drinks cabinets, but if you live in a hot environment, then you may need to regulate the temperature. Beer on the other hand, is best served cold, and although your regular fridge serves the purpose, its much nicer to have a real beer fridge!
Benefits of Proper Drinks Cabinets
- Better Space management – You will be adding some extra storage space to your overall kitchen.
- Aesthetic Beauty – Increase the overall attractiveness of your kitchen.
Pantry vs Bar & Wine Cabinets
Many people will store their wine bottles and glass in regular kitchen cabinets or in the pantry. That can be okay but if you want style and better convenience then you are going to need some type of home bar cabinet. Often the kitchen cabinets are full of other items so it can be difficult to fit what you need in them. A decent under the counter cooler works really well, as do corner drinks cabinets.
A Bar Cabinet would typically have drinks storage for more than just wine. A good bar cabinet will have a range of features for storing all types of liquor, from spirits, to beers to wine. Essentially a bar cabinet would be the beginnings of a mini home bar. Read our Guide on Buying Bar Cabinets. and even if you are interested in a home bar, you may still want to consider a drinks cart or a smaller cabinet.
Wine Cabinets and Wine Storage
A wine cabinet would be mostly built for storing wine and wine accessories. Most wine cabinets would have some sort of cooling function unless you are planning on dry storage. Some of these cooling cabinets and storage options are discussed below.
Wines need to be kept cool – white wines taste best when served between 5 and 12 degrees, and red tastes best at 15. With the average room temperature at 23 degrees and the average fridge temperature between 2 and 5 degrees (either too high or too low!), the logical solution is to get a wine cooler to keep your wine at the perfect temperature.
There are many solutions for keeping your wine collection cool. Wine coolers can come in different shapes, sizes and styles to suit your home and decor. The most popular styles of wine coolers for sale are wine refrigerators and wine cooling units, although many people buy smaller wine coolers for home use. Wine coolers also come in single and dual zone options.
The refrigerator style wine cooler is ideal if you have a small to medium collection of wine bottles that you want to keep at the optimum temperature.
The refrigerator style wine cooler is ideal if you don’t have a wine cellar or separate space to store your bottles. Refrigerator coolers are great for keeping in your kitchen next to a fridge freezer, on a kitchen counter or underneath a base unit. Rather than having to leave guests alone to hunt for a bottle of wine in your cellar, this is the far more convenient cooling solution. For even more convenience, consider a dual zone wine cooler.
From basic refrigerator style designs to the more sophisticated touch screen or single serving dispensers now on the market, these coolers come at a range of prices and are the perfect addition to a modern kitchen. Always read reviews of even the best wine refrigerators.
Wine Cooling Units (or Wine Cooling Cabinets / Wine Coolers)
The best wine cooling solution for connoisseurs; cooling units are ideal for you if you have a large space to cool your wine such as a wine cellar or separate storage space.
Buying a cooling unit to keep all your bottles at the right temperature is the much more cost effective solution for keeping a big collection cool. Usually free-standing or connected to a cellar wall, there are various types such as air-cooled systems, water-cooled systems, through-wall systems and humidification systems.
Cooling units are perfect for your home if you already have the space to store a large wine collection. People that buy wine and consume it within a few weeks of its purchase should use refrigerated wine coolers. However, if you are a collector of fine wines, own more than 300 bottles (for example) and plan to see growth in your collection, then getting a cooling unit installed in your wine cellar will suit you better. Cooling units can monitor temperature and humidity in larger spaces and can keep your wines at the perfect level for consumption, whether you decide to drink them now or in a few years time.
What is the difference between a wet bar and a dry bar?
These both refer to dedicated bar “areas” and not a simple installation. These definitions apply to “bars” rather than single pieces of bar furniture. The simplest explanation is the easiest. However note – a wet bar is mostly useful if you are planning on serving more than just wine, such as cocktails etc.A wet bar is a bar area that has a sink with a drain and water. the size of it, its structure etc doesn’t matter, as long as a sink is present and the area is used as a “bar” whether regularly or only occasionally, then that area can be referred to as a “wet bar”.
A home wet bar is usually built either in kitchen areas or in basements or man caves. As long as the room has running water and a draining pipe, a wet bar can be fairly easily built in most homes and is a popular DIY project. A wet bar is made up a range of parts, from a wine cooler to a liquor cabinet to fridges and display cabinets. See our guide on buying the right wet bar cabinets.
If you don’t have room in your kitchen for another cabinet, you can install one of those wet bar cabinet conversions that will allow you to hold your wine bottles and glasses. See our guide on organizing your bar cabinets.
The Importance of Storing Good Wine Properly.
What the average person doesn’t appreciate, is that wine changes, influenced by its surroundings. The only way to avoid destroying the taste and flavor of your wine, is to store it the way it is meant to be stored. Read our guide on proper storage of wine.
Wine ages faster if it is stored above recommended storage temperature.
The very simple rules to keep in mind:
- Stick to the recommended temperature – if you allow your wine to cool well beyond suggested levels, you may find it condensing deposits.
- Where possible, bottles that came with a cork, should be stored with the cork, and placed on the side so as to allow some moisture to the cork.
- Keep away from warmth. If you allow the wine to be stored in a higher than suggested temperature, it will age too quickly destroying its flavor.
Getting a wine bar cabinet might or might not be something for you depending on your needs but if you are in the market for one, then one place you will definitely want to look for them is online. By doing this, you would be able to compare the different models and types that are available as well as run some price comparison in order to find the best deals.