Tips to Choose a Commercial Bottle Cooler

Whether you’re a full-service bar or a restaurant that needs to keep bottled beverages cool, nothing is as crucial as a commercial bottle cooler. These handy machines can work wonders for your operation, delivering both efficiency and reliability. 

However, because restaurateurs have different needs, they need to make sure that they are choosing the right bottle cooler. So, with that in mind, we wanted to go over the top tips for comparing these machines. 

Why Use a Commercial Bottle Cooler?

If the goal of a bottle cooler is to keep beverages cold, why not use a full-size refrigerator or simply store drinks in the walk-in? As we’ll discover, there are plenty of benefits to buying one of these machines. Also, as long as beverage sales are a significant part of your business, these cooler will be so much more efficient and easy to use than any alternatives. 

Front or Back of House?

One of the most vital elements to consider is whether your bottle cooler will be customer-facing or not. Also, you may decide to have one or two in the front and a couple in the back. For example, the FOH coolers may have non-alcoholic beverages inside. 

As we go through the various components of commercial bottle coolers, be sure to keep in mind how it will be used. That will influence your decision more than anything else. 

Door Types

Typically speaking, if your bottle cooler will be in the front of the restaurant, then you want a glass door. This allows customers to see inside clearly, and it makes it easier to know when to restock. 

For coolers that will be behind the counter, you can choose between glass and insulated doors. The benefit of insulated doors is that they can be much more efficient, but it’s harder to tell when your supplies are running low. 

Another piece of the door to pay attention to is whether it opens on a hinge or slides. Sliding doors are excellent when space is an issue, as they can be placed almost anywhere with quick access. 

However, one potential problem is that the door may not get closed all the way, which can make it much less efficient. FOH coolers will experience this issue a lot more since customers won’t be as diligent as restaurant staff. 

Instead, it’s usually better to get doors with hinges since they will close automatically. As long as you have the space for them, there shouldn’t be any complications. 

Material - Stainless Steel vs. Vinyl

In a commercial kitchen, most equipment and prep tables are going to be made of stainless steel. When cared for properly, the material can last forever. So, it makes sense to buy a commercial bottle cooler the same way.

However, vinyl-covered coolers do exist, and they can sometimes be a better choice. The primary difference between the two is that vinyl coolers don’t scratch and scuff as easily. Also, they are usually darker colors, so it’s harder to get them dirty. 

Size Dimensions

No matter what, commercial bottle coolers are smaller than a standard fridge. However, the size of your cooler makes a considerable difference depending on where you put it. In many cases, restaurants have them behind the counter, which means that they have to fit within a specific space. 

For FOH models, you may have more space to put a unit, but keep in mind that you need ample ventilation around all sides. Also, if you have a larger machine where customers can get to it, there is more potential for theft or accidental messes. 

Finally, you want to make sure that the inside dimensions are suitable for your needs. Will you be putting mostly cans or bottles inside? What about oversized containers like wine and spirits? Overall, you need to maximize the cooler’s usable space, so plan wisely. 

Contact Texas Restaurant Supply

We have a wide selection of commercial bottle coolers for all situations. No matter how many beverages you need to store, we can accommodate you. Call us today to find out more and to see what we have in stock.