Chilled to Perfection!

Under-counter refrigerators seem to be showing up everywhere lately.  In the custom homes built by Woodridge Custom Builders LLC we have placed them in kitchens, wet bar areas, coffee bars, home offices, garages, and guesthouses.  Woodridge has also placed them in the master suite.

Popular brands for these refrigerators include U-line, Sub-Zero, GE, Viking, and Kitchen-Aid.  Some of these units have pull out drawers, and glass doors.  The glass doors can be switched to an endless number of alternatives from the standard appliance look to matching kitchen cabinets.

Some models strictly designed for wine have distinct temperature zones, one for red wines and the other for white wines.  The homeowner’s wine selections determine where the temperature is set.   Wine is stored in drawers horizontally in a head-to-toe format allowing the cork to remain wet and maintain the freshness of the wine.  

Some models can be used exclusively for soda, bottled water, and other beverages without space for wine storage.  These are typically called beverage centers. Other models allow for bottles of water, soda, fruit drinks, etc. to be stored at the top of the refrigerator while wine is stored at the bottom of the refrigerator.  While this flexibility sounds great, in our experience at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, with one brand, we had  the soda and water stored on the top shelves too warm when the wine on the bottom shelf was perfect.  With a temperature adjustment to chill the soda, soda cans burst into a slushy mess while bottled water froze solid.  Eventually after a few very narrow temperature adjustments the refrigerator chilled to perfection.

When planning the installation of an under-counter refrigerator in a custom home, custom home buyers are encouraged to carefully consider how the refrigerator will be used before making a selection, these refrigerators usually range from $1000 –  $1500 depending on the brand and style selected.  At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, our custom home buyer’s are sent to Westar Kitchen and Bath, Tempe, AZ to meet with Andy Welemin, one of Westar’s top appliance sales representatives, (  Andy’s expertise has helped many customers simplify appliance decisions for their custom home.

There are several photos below; the under-counter refrigerator in the first picture is located at the bottom left of the lower cabinets.  The beverage center has been covered with a matching alder wood cabinet front.  This wet bar area provides a great place to serve ice-cold refreshments on a hot Arizona day.  The second photo exhibits a wine closet.  Unchilled wine is stored on the shelves above the under-counter refrigerator and the refrigerator exclusively used for wine sits below.  The third photo is strictly a wine storage refrigerator in a butler’s pantry.  The fourth photo is an under counter refrigerator used sports drinks, bottled water and soda, in a house designed with teenagers in mind.  Click on each photo to enlarge and ‘back’ to return to other photos.

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