There are few things as enjoyable as cracking open a cold brewski after a long, hot day in the great outdoors (or, y’know, at work). Beers usually live in the fridge where they’re kept frosty cold – but what about when you’re taking an off-grid detour? You could fuss with bags of ice, or lug around a generator (seriously, don’t do that). Or you could just get yourself an eCool. This Danish startup founded by four beer-loving guys invented an environment-friendly cooler that keeps beers cool all year round without a single volt of electricity. The secret? They let nature do all the work.
The concept of the eCool beer cooler is a simple one. In fact, rural cultures have used it for centuries to keep perishables fresh when there’s no refrigerator. Remember your grandma’s root cellar? It used the natural coolness and steady humidity of the subterranean world to keep food from freezing during the winter and spoiling during the summer. The eCool does the same thing, but in a modern, convenient way.
The eCool (short for “earth cooler”) is just over three feet tall, about nine inches in diameter and weighs about 26 pounds. Installation means digging a three foot hole, but the designers say it’ll probably be easier if you use a garden drill. Once installed, the eCool can hold an entire case of beer (that’s 24 cans) and can stay in the ground year round.
And now the part you’ve all been waiting for–the part where you take the beer out and drink it. If you envisioned your best buddy elbow deep in a hole in the back yard trying to retrieve the last beer, banish the thought. The clever guys at eCool have that part all figured out. Just turn the nifty hand crank on the side and the cooler’s internal mechanism will haul up the next beer in line and dispense it through an adorable vending flap. The crank also works in the other direction to lower cans into the cooler. See I told you! Magic.
Although the eCool was supposed to be available for pre-order until June 30, 2014, the product’s Facebook page claims they’ve already sold out. “You can still order from www.eng.ecool.dk, but expect [a] long time before delivery,” explains the team.