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Wine Cooler Temperature vs. bottle

marbury021 Apr 23, 2012 11:22 AM

Hi -

I recently purchased a wine refrigerator and am storing my whites at 45 and reds at 55. When I take a bottle out, however, my Brookstone wine chiller says it's much warmer than that. Should the wine essentially be ready to drink from the refrigerator? Am I wrong in my assumption that the wine itself should be very close to the temperature inside of the refrigerator? Also, is it alright to use a regular glass thermometer inside a glass of wine to test this?

Thanks in advance!

  1. Midlife Apr 23, 2012 04:41 PM

    Noted your comment about the chiller being off. I was going to say that the fridge should keep the wine at +/- 2-3 degrees of what it reads, so that spread would mean it's not working as it should. Happy for you if it's not the fridge.

    I'd also agree with goldangl95 about the proper storage temp, though the 'experts' usually say reds should be in the upper 50s and whites in the lower 50's. Serving at 67 is OK for a red, but kinda high for a white, especially because of how the flavors of whites change as they warm up to room temp. At 67 you're not getting full benefit of that and missing the low end. OTOH, I always recommend doing whatever makes you happy.

    1. g
      goldangl95 Apr 23, 2012 12:14 PM

      A few things about small wine coolers,

      1. Due to how they cool, I believe cheap "thermoelectric" fridges have little vibration but also are ineffective at cooling. If my place gets above 80 degress inside, my little wine fridge is at a real temperature of about 67

      2. There are two reasons to keep a wine refrigerator. One, is to age the bottles. Two, is to keep them the perfect temperature for serving.

      If you want to keep the bottles at a nice steady aging, without drying the cork, most people say to keep all your wines (regardless of white or red) at about 55 degrees.

      As for what temp to drink the wines at, it depends on the wine. Crisp, acidic whites benefit from being a little below 50 degrees, more warm, softer, oaky whites more like 55 degrees.

      Reds also can range in the 60 degree frame.

      So it depends what you are trying to do and also your preference, on what temperature you like your wines.

      3. As a difference between the outside temp of the fridge, and inside the bottle....there should be little difference if the wine was sitting in the fridge for the full day or so to fully adjust to the temperature. Either your wine fridge is off or your thermometer in the glass is off.

      The temperature thing is more of an art than a science...I would trust your tastebuds more than the thermometer! Always err on the side of cooler, you can always warm the glass with your hands...

      1 Reply
      1. re: goldangl95
        marbury021 Apr 23, 2012 12:19 PM

        Thanks for your reply! I've verified the temperature inside of the wine refrigerator with an independent thermometer. Seems to me the wine is probably at a good temperature coming out of the refrigerator, but the Brookstone chiller doesn't recognize it.

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