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Insider’s Guide to Bars and Wine Cellars

We delve into first-class wine storage with three leading Australian designers, available at Winning Appliances for bars and cellars within the home.

Crafting an exceptional bar or cellar space means balancing sophisticated design elements with the practicalities of storing wine within controlled, optimum conditions. So wine storage is an important decision when considering a kitchen, bar or cellar layout and design scheme.

This insider’s guide uncovers the different wine storage options available; from under-counter wine cabinets and integrated wine refrigeration to bespoke walk-in-cellars options – through case study spaces crafted by leading Australian designers.

We take a closer look at the spatial resolve behind each unique home and how the designer’s thoughtful selection of wine storage, placement, size, and capacity were all paramount to meeting the design brief. The cross-section of wine storage options that we’ve handpicked are retailed through Winning Appliances and remain firm favourites among the high-end design community.

In partnership with Winning Appliances

Tamarama Penthouse by SE DÉA | Photography by Dave Wheeler | Styling by Atelier Lab

Under-counter Wine Cabinets

In a move to maximise space-saving measures, the positioning of an under-counter wine cabinet encourages ease of circulation, extends meal prep work surfaces, and increases storage utilities to support a streamlined design resolution. The under-counter wine cabinet is designed to fit discreetly under a kitchen bench or bar countertop, perfect for designing within the confines of a petite spatial footprint.

In Tamarama Penthouse, designed by SE DÉA, the design team selected a Vintec wine cabinet from Winning Appliances that was purposefully tucked away to ensure it didn’t deter from the kitchen’s visual line of sight. The strategic placement of the cabinet also allows the craftsmanship of the custom joinery to come to the fore. When designing a kitchen with wine storage, SE DÉA considers height, depth, ventilation, and location. “We also consider how the wine fridge will work with the rest of the kitchen space, both from an accessibility and functionality perspective, as well as a visual perspective,” SE DÉA director Samantha Birtles says.

Typically smaller than freestanding wine fridges, yet with the option to store between a dozen to fifty bottles of wine, under-bench wine cabinets are designed to maintain a consistent temperature and humidity level essential for preserving wine.  “Vintec wine cabinets are climate controlled and come in diverse sizes and designs. This is useful when designing a kitchen as they have plenty of options and are a beautiful sleek design that can complement any kitchen,” Samantha explains.

Newtown House by Bagnall Design Studio | Photography by Tom Ferguson | Stylist Olga Lewis

Integrated Wine Refrigeration

Commonly used within separate bar areas, kitchens, and butler’s pantries, a freestanding wine fridge is a standalone unit that can be placed on its own or in a row alongside others. More compact compared to a walk-in wine cellar, yet with the ability to hold anywhere from a dozen to a few hundred bottles of wine, these taller, integrated wine fridges are often made with glass doors to showcase the elegant shapes of the bottles inside.

In Newtown Home, designed by Bagnall Design Studio, an integrated wine fridge allowed for a more continuous design resolve in the heart of this home. “The advantage of using a wine fridge in this kitchen space was that we were easily able to integrate it with the custom stained American oak door panels while maintaining continuity of the handles and hardware throughout this kitchen,” creative director Hayden Bagnall explains.

Walk-in Wine Cellars

Providing an intimate setting for entertaining, a purpose-built space for collecting and enjoying wine is the ultimate companion for any serious wine connoisseur looking to preserve wine within a more spacious home. A walk-in wine cellar is designed to hold hundreds if not thousands of bottles of wine and often includes a bar area to enjoy an open bottle. A walk-in cellar typically features a climate-controlled environment with custom shelving and racks or wine refrigeration to store wine bottles and is often designed to include decorative features such as lighting and steel-framed, sealable glass doors. Winning Appliances offers customisable wine solutions for any walk-in cellar with their in-house consultation services.

Toorak House, designed by Davidov Architects, includes an intimate cellar and bar space. “When designing a cellar space, it’s important to consider not only the visual appeal of the area but also how it functions,” Davidov Architects director Robert Davidov explains. “Bars are often spaces that have occasional usage, so having flexibility can add value. Striking a balance between aesthetics and practicality is crucial”. A key consideration when designing a wine cellar is also storage. “It’s important to consider not only the storage capacity but also how spirits and glassware are displayed. The ability to “open” up the bar can also add practicality and unfolding drama to a space,” Robert adds.

Megan Rawson

Previously in communications, marketing, and PR roles at Alexander &Co, and Mim Design - all while writing as a senior contributor for est living, Meg has been with the team for six years and, most recently, stepped into the role of partnerships editor. With a degree in interior design from the Interior Design School of London and product experience in London studios Tom Dixon and Studio Toogood, Meg has an extensive folio of design knowledge globally and locally, giving her the perfect understanding to manage est’s commercial content. Follow her visual journey here:

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