A dedicated beverage refrigerator is the first step to becoming a better host and having your favorite beverages at hand, always at the right temperature and in perfect shape. They say we are what we eat, but that goes for drinks, too. What we drink defines us, and how we store our favorite drinks says a lot about our personality! Let’s store our drinks the right way.
Here is all you need to know about setting your beverage refrigerator temperature, depending on the type of drinks you’re planning on storing. We will also discuss the best temperature for storing and serving beer, wine and other drinks. We also have a few tips and tricks that will help you ensure you store your drinks safely.
If you are looking for the perfect beverage fridge or cooler, explore Ca’Lefort selection and find the unit that works for you and your home or business. If you’re in a hurry, scroll down to our storage and service temperature cheat sheet below.
Why Store Beverages at Certain Temperatures?
Not all beverages are created equal. Some drinks, like water, have infinite shelf lives, but that’s not the case with many others. Fine wine might still be delicious after a few years, and craft beer can probably also withstand the test of time — that, of course, if you store them properly.
Concisely, warm storage temperatures speed up the natural decay of drinks — a bottle of fine wine expected to evolve for a decade can be past its prime in just a few months if stored too warm, and the same goes for beer; it can lose its freshness and aromatic properties quickly.
On the other hand, if the storage temperature is too low, your fermented drinks will not evolve, which is important for drinks like wine, so you’ll miss out on the nuances only well-aged wine has to offer. Low temperatures are not that bad for other drinks; not all beverages are meant to be aged, but you still want to enjoy them at the right temperature, the sweet spot in which they show their best.
What’s the Best Beer Temperature?
Beer is a complicated beverage, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of styles, and each has its personality. Commercial beer, like your typical Bud, Heineken or Corona, has longer shelf lives, and it’s because this type of beer is pasteurized. That’s not the case with craft wheat beers or geeky IPAs — these need greater care. Besides, the best storage temperature for beers differs from their drinking temperature.
Store your beer at 34°F when possible. As references, high-quality beverage fridges and beverage coolers can keep beverages at a steady 34°F. Your kitchen refrigerator maintains an average temperature of between 35 and 37 degrees.
If you’re a beer enthusiast, set the temperature of your beverage fridge or cooler to ensure that heat does not damage the beer while keeping it at the right drinking temperature. Let’s discuss the best temperature for the most common beer styles.
Ideal Drinking Temperatures for Different Types of Beer
These are the ideal drinking temperatures for distinct types of beer, considering both their safety and flavor.
American and International Lagers. Whether commercial or artisanal, all lager beers are made with a particular type of yeast, Saccharomyces pastorianus, that results in refreshing brews that are never noticeably aromatic. These beers are best enjoyed at temperatures between 34°F and 40°.
Ales. Ale beers come in many styles, but they’re all made with the Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast. These beers are more complex on the nose and palate, so they’re best enjoyed a bit warmer. If too cold, the aromas are hard to pick up. Serve ale beers between 40°F and 50°F.
Cask ales and specialty beers. Some types of beer are more robust, complex and alcoholic, and you can serve them a bit warmer, just like you would with full-bodied red wine. Specialty beers are best enjoyed between 50-55°F.
Tips for Storing Beers in A Beverage Fridge
- Only store beer you’re planning on consuming in the following weeks.
- Craft beer is sometimes unpasteurized and has a shorter shelf-life than commercial brands.
- Store your beer in a beverage cooler or fridge immediately after purchasing.
- Keep an eye on your beer’s “Best Before” date if available. For beer, the fresher, the better.
- Not all beers are meant to be served ice cold. Complex beer styles are usually most interesting when served closer to 50°.
- Letting beer warm up doesn’t ‘skunk’ the beer. These unpleasant aromas develop after the beer is exposed to light for extended periods.
What’s the Best Wine Temperature?
Wine is as complex as beer, if not more. There are endless wine styles in all sweetness and robustness levels, and they all need special care.
Less than five per cent of the wine produced is meant to be aged. Most white wines (except for oak-aged examples) are best enjoyed as young as possible, and most reds are best before they turn three years old. Of course, age-worthy wine is still delicious after many decades! This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t store your wine, even your everyday wine, at the right temperature.
Although different wine styles are best enjoyed at different temperatures, the best temperature to store wine is more or less the same for all wines. Store your wine between 40°F-65°F. If you store more white than red, aim for the lower end of the spectrum.
The difference between storing wine at 40°F and 65°F is the speed at which the wine evolves. All wines experience an aging curve; after they peak, they inevitably deteriorate. Low temperatures will keep them in better shape for longer but might prevent certain wines from showing their best. Having said that, the wine’s serving temperature is just as significant as the temperature at which you store it.
Ideal Drinking Temperatures for Different Types of Wine
White wine, sparkling and rosé. Serve inexpensive sparkling wine, stainless-steel white wine and rosé at a temperature of around 39°F.
Oaked white wine and Champagne. Serve robust oak-aged white wine and complex sparkling wine (like Champagne) at a temperature closer to 50°F.
Light-bodied red wine. Serve light-bodied and youthful red wines at a temperature of around 50°F.
Full-bodied red wine. Serve full-bodied and complex red wines at a temperature between 60-65°F.
Dessert wine. Store dessert wine at the same range as the rest of your wine, but serve it on the cold side, close to 40°F. This goes for late-harvest wine, wine made with botrytized grapes and sweet fortified wine.
Note: Storing wine at a temperature closer to the desired serving temperature is advisable, but you can always store wine colder (40°F) and allow it to warm up before serving or keeping it warmer (60-65°F) and cooling it in an ice bath before serving.
Tips for Storing Wine in A Beverage Fridge
- Store wine on its side when possible to prevent the cork from drying.
- Don’t disturb the wine bottles to prevent premature aging signs.
- Store the bottles with their label side up to recognize and access them easily.
- Don’t expose wine to abrupt temperature changes or to direct sunlight for extended periods.
- Keep your wine cooler or beverage fridge clean and wipe condensation regularly (if any.)
- Don’t use scented soap or chemicals to clean your storage unit, as corks are porous, and you could accidentally taint the wine with unpleasant odors.
What’s the Best Soda Temperature?
Unlike wine and beer, sodas, mineral water, sparkling water and other soft drinks are much more stable and won’t go bad easily. You can store sodas in a fridge or cooler for months without noticing changes in color or flavor.
This means that what matters most when storing this type of beverage is keeping them as close as possible to their ideal serving temperature. Although we all like our drinks differently, let’s close this guide with the best temperature to store beverages in general.
Best Temperatures for Other Beverages
Store your soft drinks at a low temperature of around 40°F, their ideal serving temperature, to ensure your favorite beverages are ready to be picked up and enjoyed. Soft drinks will freeze more easily than alcoholic beverages, so it’s best to avoid storing them at temperatures dangerously close to 32°F.
Talking about other beverages, if you want to store spirits and liqueurs in a wine cooler or beverage fridge, keep them close to their ideal serving temperature, between 55 and 60 degrees. However, there’s nothing wrong with storing high-alcohol beverages a bit colder.
Storage and Serving Temperatures for Beverages - Cheat Sheet.
|Beverage||Storing Temp.||Serving Temp.|
|Sodas and soft drinks||40°F||40°F|
Store Your Beverages at the Right Temperature
If you want to have your favorite beverages safe and ready to be enjoyed, explore Ca’Lefort's selection of wine coolers and beverage fridges. Ca'Lefort 24 inch Beverage Fridge holds 220 cans and is a handy built-in and freestanding unit with immense versatility. Buy your beverage cooler and place it in your kitchen, game room, living room or home bar and start drinking the right way.