Ice cold drinks are necessities of any bar. With a bar refrigerator, you can display your wine and beer selection to customers while also keeping your beverages crisp and cool. Bar refrigerators are small and stylish enough to sit on counter behind the bar, or they can be placed beneath the bar, preserving valuable counter space. With numerous sizes and styles of bar refrigerators to choose from, you can find the best refrigeration unit for your bar or restaurant with just a bit of careful research.
The first step in choosing the best refrigerator for your bar is determining what kinds of beverages you want to serve. If you plan on serving various different beers and microbrews, then a bar refrigerator with clear glass doors will allow customers to view what you have available. On the other hand, if you're mainly serving reputable domestic beers, then you can save money on a solid refrigerator with no windows. Another consideration is whether to get a bar refrigerator with top-opening doors, which are ideal for removing bottled beverages.
For keeping liquor and cocktails ingredients cold, solid-door bar refrigerators are usually the best option. Orange juice, tomato juice, energy drinks and other cocktail ingredients need to be kept cool, but displaying these items behind a glass door won't enhance the style of your bar. Another factor when considering a bar fridge for cocktails is having a glass chiller. Some cocktails must be served in chilled glasses. Having a bar refrigerator with a glass chiller is also useful in the summer, when more people tend to order icy-cold drinks.
Bars with a large wine selection may benefit from wine merchandisers, which are built specifically to store and refrigerate wine. Unlike other types of bar refrigerators, merchandisers offer more customizable temperatures to refrigerate different types of wine more properly. Most wine merchandisers are built to stand vertically, but horizontal wine merchandisers can be found for placement under the bar. In addition to keeping your wine properly refrigerated, wine merchandisers also make bottles and their labels more visible to patrons. Standard bar refrigerators and back bar coolers can also work for storing and displaying wine, but the wine merchandiser is best when wine is a bar's primary beverage.
Material is the other big factor when choosing a bar refrigerator. Stainless steel refrigerators are more durable, and the shiny surfaces of stainless steel can add modern style to well-lit rooms. Vinyl bar refrigerators are cheaper, and they lack the style of stainless steel units; however, they are ideal for dimly lighted bars, or for storing out of sight beneath bar countertops. Operating a bar requires numerous supplies, and the choice of a bar refrigerator is near the top in order of importance.