After a recent trip to the Texas Hill Country and making several online wine orders to help support Texas wineries as we all deal with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, I found myself with an abundance of wine. I know, it’s a tough problem to have. The opportunity to review the BODEGA 15” wine cooler came at the perfect time as I was out of space to properly store my wine. The BODEGA 15” wine cooler is approximately 15 inches wide and is kitchen counter height. This makes it perfect for fitting underneath your kitchen or bar counter, or you can use it freestanding. BODEGA offers three kitchen counter height wine coolers with this model being the middle size of the range. The others are a 19 bottle and a 52 bottle. The coolers use a compressor for cooling and has a single cooling zone.
I received the wine cooler shortly after order. The shipping weight of the box is around 90 pounds giving me a heads up that this is a pretty serious piece of equipment. Given the unit’s size and weight, it did take some effort to unbox. The box was built almost like a crate where the top and sides are to be pulled away from the base. The wine cooler was well packaged helping it arrive to my home with no damage. Some other large items I’ve purchased have included a sheet of unpacking tips in the top of the box and I feel that would have been helpful here. Out of the box I was impressed with the BODEGA’s build quality. The materials seem to be of high quality, and the fit and finish are very nice.
Setting up the BODEGA wine cooler was easy. The user’s manual recommends that the unit be left to settle for one day after shipping. The preferred wine cooler spot in my kitchen is next to a set of cabinets which makes the BODEGA’s height perfect for my spot. Being only 15 inches wide means it doesn’t take up a lot of floor space. The BODEGA cooler can be set up as a standalone unit or can also be set up as a kitchen built-in between cabinets. After I moved the cooler into its spot, I leveled it using its adjustable feet. The only remaining set up steps was to give it a quick clean and attach the door handle using the two included screws.
Now it was time for what I had been waiting for, powering up the BODEGA wine cooler. The control panel made it easy set the cooler to my preferred temperature. The control panel also has a button lock feature which locks all of the buttons on the display. Pressing both + and – unlocks them. The compressor works well bringing the unit from a room temperature of 74 degrees down to 56 degrees in only 20 minutes. I threw another test at the BODEGA wine cooler. After giving it a few hours at 56 degrees, I added eight bottles of wine stored at room temperature. The cooler was able to return to 56 degrees in less than 30 minutes. I used my refrigerator thermometer to verify the unit’s temperature readings, and it was spot on.
The next day it was time to check the BODEGA cooler’s capacity. The stated capacity is 31 bottles, and as with most wine coolers, this is based on ideally sized Bordeaux-style bottles. Many wine bottles don’t fit this size with the growing popularity of unique bottle shapes and heavy glass. The cooler does have space for larger bottles in the top and bottom shelves, a thoughtful design choice. The bottom shelf can be removed which allows you to store more bottles. Another thoughtful design choice are the wooden racks are designed in a way to nest up to five bottles per shelf in a top-to-bottom fashion. While I wasn’t able to fit five of my bottles per shelf on the regular height shelves, four did fit well. I did fit five bottles in the larger top shelf though. I was able to fit 24 bottles comfortably in the BODEGA cooler. I looked up typical capacity of compressor-model wine coolers of this size and many had a stated capacity of 18 bottles with six three-bottle shelves. The BODEGA’s clever packaging gives it an advantage here.