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Buying a poor quality bottle cooler is about as enjoyable as serving warm alcohol to your customers – which is why it’s so important to get this particular purchase right!

The search for a bottle cooler cabinet can become an overwhelming process when there are so many out there to choose from, and so many different factors to consider when selecting the right model. But, fortunately, it doesn’t have to keep you up at night.

Discover our full range of Bottle Coolers

We’ve put together our Bottle Cooler Buying Guide, to give you a helping hand with this important purchase. Covering the questions that you need to ask when choosing a bottle cooler for your bar or restaurant, you’ll soon understand the particular needs that your equipment must meet so that your service always runs smoothly.

What will your bottle cooler be used for, and how much space do you have?

A bottle fridge, or bottle cooler cabinet, is used to refrigerate cold beverages; from mixers and fresh fruit juices to bottled beers, ciders or wines. They can be used to conveniently and attractively store the chilled drinks your menu has on offer, and are typically located beside or behind the bar.

So, where do you start? First use the size of the open space you have available, and how many bottles you will wish to store, to determine the parameters of your bottle cooler. At Lockhart Catering Equipment, our bottle coolers are available in a wide range of sizes – from small counter top coolers to store and display a few bottles within easy reach, to larger cabinets or bottle wells with over 500L capacity.

Secondly, you should consider which other features you need from your new cooler. That is, of course, aside from needing it to cool the beverages you sell! For example, do you need one that’s very energy-efficient? Is your bar fairly dark, so you need one that’s well-lit? Mapping out your needs is the best starting to point to ensure you find the right cooler for your business.

What are the types of bottle cooler to choose from?

Back Bar Bottle Coolers

A very convenient option due to its lower height, a back bar bottle fridge can sit on or beneath your counter top. It needs to be plugged into an outlet, and a single refrigerator can typically cool around 64 bottles.

However, back bar bottle coolers are not just available as a single door, it can also be purchased as a double door bottle cooler to cool over 100 bottles at a time. This option is particularly popular in the hospitality industry due to its adaptable size.

Countertop Bottle Coolers

Where space is at a premium, a countertop bottle cooler could be the solution. Although they have a far lower capacity than a back bar bottle cooler, a small bottle cooler can sit on your bar top and attractively display a selection of your bottled drinks. They may also provide an energy efficient solution in restaurants or bars where only a small number of bottled drinks are sold.

Well Bottle Coolers

Where you need a large capacity for cooling bottles, and to have them within easy reach at all times, a well bottle cooler could be the ideal option. Larger models have the space to cool over 500 bottles at a time – perfect for bars where bottled beers and drinks dominate the menu, as well as busy nightclubs. Their slim design means they can fit behind a bartop so your staff can easily reach in and grab the bottles they need, without having to turn away from customers.

What features should I look out for in a bottle cooler?

From the offset of your search for the perfect bottle fridge, it’s important to outline your requirements as, straight away, this will narrow things down and ensure you find the cooler that meets your needs.


In terms of functionality, it’s critical that you find a cooler that suits your space. This doesn’t just mean a bottle fridge that fits the right measurements. In fact, you should also review whether your bar area is more suited to sliding doors, for example, as not to occupy any more space than necessary.

Also, it’s advisable to research whether components of the fridge are removable, to ensure you’re able to keep the fridge as clean as possible. For example, imagine the build-up of alcohol spilled in a beer bottle fridge. The beer may seep between the crevices, and without detachable components, would be a real pain to clean up! Thereby investing in a fridge with detachable parts is a sure-fire way to uphold your business’ hygiene rating.


The features are just as important as functionality when it comes to finding the right bottle cooler for your business. For example, if you’re keen to monitor the temperature of your drinks it’s advisable that you look for a cooler with a digital temperature control, so you can keep an eye on it and change as you see fit. Security is another factor to consider, such as finding a cooler with a lock to keep your drinks secure.

We understand that purchases such as a new bottle cooler are important when working in hospitality, so we hope this guide has helped you understand your options, and where to start. Continue your hunt for the right appliances for your hospitality business on our website where you can explore our full range of refrigeration and bottle cooler cabinets.

Discover our full range of Bottle Coolers

For more useful information on picking up the right equipment for your establishment, take a look at our Ice Machine Buying Guide, or Water Boiler Buying Guide to ensure the efficiency of your business.


Lockhart Catering on 23 October 2017 12:00 AM

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