Anatomy of a Refrigerated Wine Cabinet

| April 3, 2014

An elegant restaurant experience is created through a combination of dining room atmosphere, food presentation, interesting flavors, and wine. For clubs and restaurants with large wine collections, this means keeping wine bottles at perfect temperatures for serving and for long term storage. An increasingly popular appliance for the industry is the refrigerated wine cabinet. If you are considering acquiring one or more of these practical cabinets, you might want to take a short anatomy lesson.

 

[caption id="attachment_1766" align="aligncenter" width="400"]Vigilant Woodwork's bank of custom refrigerated wine cabinets for the Bokx 109 Restaurant. The trendy lounge and dining room at the Bokx 109 Restaurant at the Hotel Indigo in Newton, MA, features a bank of custom wine cabinets in full view of the guests, enhancing the atmosphere and allowing the restaurant to sell more wine.[/caption]

The outer shell: The cabinet body should be constructed of a high R-value insulated material. Structural Insulated Panels, or SIPs, having an R-value of at least 10 are favored, and the cabinet should be sealed against condensation. Be sure you are not buying particle board, and look for exterior-quality solid hardwood door jambs to ensure cabinet strength. Check to see if the interior is finished. Durable finishes protect the cabinet against moisture and spills.

The feet: Be sure your cabinet is equipped with commercial-grade adjustable leveling feet. The cabinets may be filled with 600 pounds of wine, so it is vitally important that the cabinet is level to ensure a tight door seal.

[caption id="attachment_1331" align="aligncenter" width="480"]Vigilant's refrigerated wine cabinets find a home along one wall of the Martingale Wharf Club's dining area A bank of refrigerated wine cabinets line one wall of the new Martingale Wharf riverside restaurant in Portsmouth, NH. Note the etched glass logo on the doors.[/caption]

The doors: The front of your cabinet will be made up of a glass door, so for the sake of energy efficiency, be sure to demand high r-value glass, preferably double-paneled and argon-filled. Better glass prevents a common problem of condensation on the glass surfaces and helps prevent loss of energy. An exterior grade weather stripping and heavy-duty bommer hinges also ensure proper door alignment and seal. For best cabinet performance, the wood portions of the door and jambs should be solid wood and at least 1 ¾-inches thick.

The internal systems: The heart of your wine cabinet is its cooling system. In a busy setting where the doors will be opened and closed often, the cooling system has to be able to keep up. It should be quiet and reliable, commercially rated, and vibration-free. In addition, there should be a mechanism for removing condensate to prevent water damage. Your installation may involve a ducted, ductless or split cooling system with or without humidification. Consult an experienced engineering team with specialized expertise in fine wine storage.

[caption id="attachment_1586" align="aligncenter" width="480"]Wine cabinets shown with accent lighting in Salt Restaurant. In the SALT restaurant at the Wentworth-by-the-Sea Hotel in Newcastle, NH, the custom wine cabinets and display lighting lend a dramatic backdrop to the lounge area.[/caption]

Appearance: Many of these cabinets are built as fine furniture and belong in the dining area in view of guests. Soft, warm display lighting enhances the beauty of the cabinet and its contents. The wood exteriors can be custom stained to match existing millwork, making an attractive accent piece for the room’s décor.  Look for a variety of furniture styles to match your traditional or contemporary dining room or lounge fixtures. An expert design and architecture team can help integrate the design, functionality and performance of your wine cabinets.

Consult with the Experts at Vigilant Woodworks: Our refrigerated wine cabinets are backed by our satisfaction guarantee and the best warranty in the industry. Our team includes woodworkers, designers and consultants with experience in providing solutions for wine storage with superior beauty and performance. From your first phone call, you’ll be connected with the industry leaders in the installation of commercial-grade, furniture-quality refrigerated wine cabinets. All of our products are crafted in the USA by New England artisans in our Dover, New Hampshire woodworking facility.

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What Are the Best Woods for Wine Racks?

| September 14, 2011

At Vigilant Woodworks, we choose the best materials for our wine storage products so they will last a long time. Our individual wine racks, wine cellar doors, Tuscan tables and modular wine cabinets are made from mahogany, a wood known not only for its beauty but its durability. We also offer our wine racks in pine, which accepts stain well and can be sourced locally. Here is a closer look at these materials.

Click to continue reading “What Are the Best Woods for Wine Racks?”

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Types of Wooden Wine Racks

| February 2, 2011

Wooden wine racks are the most commonly-used type of wine rack for home wine cellars. Hardwoods, especially Redwood and Mahogany, are best for making wine racks, but you’ll also see pine and cedar. Wood gives an elegant look to any home wine cellar. Below are just a few of the many types of wooden wine racks.

Individual Wine Racks
These racks suspend individual bottles within the rack, allowing air to circulate around the bottle, a benefit in preserving wine. Individual wine racks also make it easy to see what wine you have at a glance.

Bin Wine Racks
These wine racks allow similar wines to be stored horizontally together in compartments, a space-saving way to store wine.

Wine Tables
These racks combine storage with a surface to serve wine. Wine tables feature bin storage underneath a polished wood tabletop.

Wine Islands
These free-standing wooden wine racks come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They sit in the middle of the room and store bottles individually. This type of rack is perfect for a large wine room or a wine retailer.

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Vigilant’s New Wine Storage Blog

| April 14, 2009

Vigilant’s new wine storage blog is now up and running at http://blog.vigilantinc.com. Check it out!

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What is wine cellar furniture and do I need it?

| April 13, 2009

While not essential, adding a few pieces of furniture when you draw up your wine cellar design can add a cozy touch to the room and give you a convenient place to sit and sip your wine. A table and a few chairs is usually sufficient. Vigilant offers a complete line of wine cellar tables and stools and can create any custom furniture piece you might desire.

Some examples of wine cellar furniture include:

Wine Cellar Tables - These free-standing wooden tables store wine beneath a wood, glass or stone top. Wine tables may be bar table height or the height of a standard kitchen counter. Some may also have drawers to store wine openers, corks and other accessories.

Wine Cellar Stools - Wine cellar stools don’t take up a lot of room or interfere with the sight lines around the cellar as a high-back chair would do. Choose the wood and finish to match your cabinets and any extras your stools must have.

Wine cellar furniture comes in a variety of styles, ranging from Italian designs to rustic, barrel-shaped pieces. Look for what fits with your wine cellar design, accent colors, and overall goals for your wine cellar.

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