I posted this on Wine.Woot.Com and I'll cut/paste them here for you...I think you might find value in it. BTW, I've had the cooler for a week or two now and love it. I had never had anything but room temperature red wine before and I seriously think drinking it slightly chilled is absolutely awesome! NEver would have guessed. Anyway, the fridge is working like a champ. Couldn't be happier.
Let me know what other questions I could answer, though I am definitely a newbie to this stuff...
I recently did a lot of reading on wine coolers and posted my results on a previous wine's discussion thread, but I'll relay some of my findings and the final result.
First of all, wine should be stored in a vibration free, cool environment that is also dark. For reds, I believe the temp should be around 60-degrees...The long and short of it is that you can get Theremoelectric Wine Coolers that don't have a compressor. They don't cool as fast and I think they would not be as ideal for white wine because they might have a problem getting to a lower temp, but they'll work perfectly for red wines, which is all I drink. They also do a good job of circulating the temp inside the unit and typically have +/- 2 degrees from the bottom to the top...Whereas with a compressor unit the variance is greater I believe. Oh, the Thermoelectric ones are apparently silent.
The largest Theremoelectrics I found were 28-bottle units. There were three brands I found: Avanti, EdgeStar, and Urbina Design. Ultimately I went with the EdgeStar because it had tinted glass and an LED light that won't emmit very much heat nor be too bright and the EdgeStar also has wood racks instead of metal. the Avanti was cheapest and I found them for $220 or so shipped. The EdgeStar was $250 shipped. I bought it on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ih=005&item=150008866723
Second tidbit...I found a free site to keep track of the wines I'm buying and consuming: www.cellartracker.com
. I have found it to be very practical to use and have gotten a few friends on it. The site would likeyou to donate if you like the service and it looks like I'll be doing that since I'm already enjoying it.
Third tidbit...You can get a subsription to Wine Spectator off of eBay for much less than you can anywhere else. Once you have the subscription running, you can buy an online subscription for 50% off, which I will be doing.
Fourth tidbit...I typically don't drink an entire bottle of wine. And, I hate drinking wine that is even a day old...I usually find that it starts to taste bad in short order. I have one of those rubber corks that you can pump the air out with, but it doesn't work that much better. HOWEVER...I was reading on a forum online and someone mentioned a trick that looks extremely promising...The person went out and bought a 375mL bottle and after drinking that wine (the one I chose tasted like crap) you can use it to store 1/2 of a full bottle. The technique is to fill the 1/2 bottle to the top, then stick the cork in it. That will prevent any air from getting in there and therefore preserve the wine. (I did it and still had a slight amount of air, but not much.) I did this for the first time last night and am curious to see the results. the only issue I have with this is that the wine i drank last night had a lot of sediment in it and after filling the 1/2 bottle the wine I was left with wasn't as good as what is probably in the 1/2 bottle. I'd love to find a 1/3 bottle or something to hold what I would typically be left with, so the search is on for that.
Anyway, so there you go. I'm just getting into this stuff, but hopefully this will help some of you.