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This time of year, my wine club shipments exceed the storage capacity of my home wine cooler. I was excited to have the opportunity to review the NewAir 15″ Black Stainless Steel Wine Fridge, knowing that it would alleviate my overcrowding problem. Who among us has ample storage space for our wine collection? Perhaps the NewAir unit would be the solution to my wine storage needs.
When the unit arrived, I was impressed by its sturdy packaging and smart look. It is a substantial unit with a strong visual presence. While only 15” wide, it is 34” high to allow it to be built into standard cabinets. I decided to use this unit as a stand-alone cabinet in my dining room. If you opt to build it in, dimensions are available on the website. An EnergyGuide sticker on the front informed that the energy operating cost is an estimate $25.70 annually. That is a small price to pay for perfectly stored wine.
Wine storage ideally keeps wine at the right temperature, but also safe from the elements. The wine cooler has a thoughtful design to ensure that my wine is in a cool, dark place free from sunlight or drafts. It is also free from vibrations since the front legs can be adjusted to eliminate any wobble. The dual temperature zones will allow me to keep my white and sparkling wines at a cooler temperature than my red wines. Humidity control is also important when storing wine. There are two clear plastic containers that were loose in the unit, and these control the humidity inside. One container fits neatly underneath the bottom shelf. After chatting with customer service, I discover that it is intended to be filled with water to help maintain moisture in the unit. The other container is the top zone, but it doesn’t have a built-in spot to reside. It can be kept on either upper shelf. I worry that it might spill, and it also would have to displace a bottle.
After wiping down the unit with a damp cloth, I plugged it in. Pretty blue LED lights illuminated the front. The quiet whirring of the motor started immediately, and the temperature started dropping. The unit has preprogrammed temperatures of 42° and 54°. These are easily changed with just the touch of a button. The temperature range for the upper zone is 40°-50°, and the lower zone can be programmed to 50°-66°.
The five beechwood racks inside beckoned me to unbox my latest wine club shipments. The sliding racks operate smoothly. I got five bottles of Texas white and rosé wines to fit on the top shelf fairly easily. However, the two facing away from me will be difficult to identify since the drawer doesn’t slide all the way out.
I didn’t fare as well on the red wine shelves. I was only able to fit four on a shelf because the red bottles I selected were a bit wider. The bottom shelf of the unit is shorter than the rest, and alternating bottles front and back seemed ill-advised on that shelf. I think I will be able to store at least two cases in the unit, but perhaps not a full 29 bottles. To maximize the capacity, I’ll store my skinniest bottles here.
Another handy feature is the lock on the bottom front of the unit. While I appreciate having a lock, I wish it could be located in a place that is easier to access.
According to the customer service representative I chatted with, the carbon filter in the back of the unit does not need to be changed. It can be cleaned with compressed air if necessary. There is very little maintenance required for the unit. Should any problems arise, the owner’s manual gives troubleshooting tips and information about a one-year limited warranty. The owner’s manual is fairly brief, but the customer service team was very responsive to my questions.
I am pleased with my new wine cooler and love having a bit more space to fill with wine. It’s just the right size for my expanding wine collection, and I am confident that it will give me many years of enjoyment.
You can buy this wine cooler at NewAir with a discount! Use code TEXASWINE20 for 20% off at NewAir 15” Built-in 29 Bottle Dual Zone Wine Fridge.
Note: This is model NWC029BS00 for the NewAir 15″ Black Stainless Steel Wine Fridge. The fridge is also available on Amazon.