Under Counter Refrigerators: Yay or Nay?

Under Counter Refrigerators: Yay or Nay?

Bethany Adams
Mar 23, 2011

I've lived in Paris for about six months now, which is both long enough to get used to and appreciate a different way of life and also long enough for the novelty of certain differences to have completely worn off. One such difference between my life in Chicago and my life in Paris is my teeny-tiny fridge.

Last fall, after I had first arrived in my cozy new digs in Paris, I wrote about space-saving appliances after being inspired by my own kitchen's combo oven-dishwasher. The novelty of this bit of genius has not yet worn off, but I am getting awfully tired of my tiny under counter refrigerator!

As far as I can tell, there are two obvious benefits of the under counter fridge: they are both space and energy efficient. This is all well and good, and if you're short on either than this type of fridge is the perfect (and let's be honest, only) choice.

However, the problems with a tiny fridge are many. First, you have to shop — not just for special recipes but for basics like milk — every other day, at least. If you live in a place like Paris, this is admittedly pretty easy and can at first seem quite a charming prospect, but eventually you will hear yourself say, "didn't I just buy milk?" because of course, you did!

Second, say you make something like a lasagna for dinner — there's no place to put a giant casserole full of left-overs. And forget about trying to make something in advance and put it in the freezer!

Finally, if you are physically impaired in any way, say a bad back, or in my case a burgeoning baby bump, reaching all but the top shelf of the fridge can be a major challenge, making an already limited situation even more limiting.

So, now that I've complained about it enough, you know how I feel about my tiny fridge! Now, I want to know what you think. Do you love your small fridge? Do you hate it? I'm especially curious to hear from anyone who downsized to a smaller fridge on purpose. Tell me what I'm not considering!

Image: Bethany Adams

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