Nothing spoils a good Chardonnay like being served at room temperature. Brookstone’s Iceless Wine Chiller will save you from that culinary calamity by chilling (or warming) your bottle to its optimal temperature.
The tabletop appliance has a sort of mini-Jabba the Hut shape but is really no bigger than a traditional ice bucket. A backlit LED screen displays the current and the target serving temperatures; it also shows a countdown timer to alert you to when the target temperature will be reached. A menu selection button lets you scroll through 40 different varieties of wine (and even sake) with pre-programmed, ideal serving temperatures for each.
The wine chiller relies on Peltier thermoelectric technology to achieve its cooling or warming. It’s not fast, though: Cooling takes on average about 45 minutes. If you’re in a hurry, there’s a Quick Chill cycle that does the job in about 30 minutes, although at the price of subjecting you to an annoying, loud engine noise.
Sure, you could put a warm bottle in the freezer for 15 minutes — but there’s a good chance it will come out too cold. The Wine Chiller is programmed to get your wine to the precisely correct temperature, neither too hot nor too cold. It works for white and red wines alike, and will even warm up a bottle if you have inadvertently chilled it too much in the refrigerator. Now that’s cool.