Refrigerators have been getting more interesting in recent years. Manufacturers such as Samsung and LG trying to outdo each other—touch screen in the door, anyone?—and new brands and new retailers are getting into the market as well. Some hope to stand out with eye-catching features; others are attempting to fill a literal niche: smaller fridges for smaller spaces. Here’s a look at six new models that Consumer Reports recently tested and added to our ratings.

French-Door Refrigerators

KitchenAid KRFC704FBS
Although the outside of the KitchenAid KRFC704FBS, $5,225, is sleek, it’s what's inside that catches your eye: two shelves with a wooden finish (shown above). A full-sized wooden pantry shelf pulls out and is intended for large platters of food. Above that is a smaller wooden shelf with a slide-out metal pan that you can use to marinate meat or chill dough. Combined with adjustable shelves, clear removable bins, and a large capacity, these features make this an ideal refrigerator for entertaining.  

The counter-depth refrigerator performed very well overall yet fell a bit short of our top picks list, mainly because of its energy-efficiency score, which was very good but not excellent. Temperature control and uniformity were excellent, it runs quietly, and it was a cinch to use even though some of the new features are unfamiliar. KitchenAid claims the wood is moisture- and stain-resistant, and we didn’t see any degradation in our tests.

Smeg FTU171X7
Smeg is known for its line of retro countertop and large appliances, but it also makes more conventional models. We tested the Smeg FTU171X7, $3,000. Despite its shiny good looks, the FTU171X7 failed miserably in its main job of keeping food at the right temperature. It struggled to reach set temperatures—37° F in the fridge and 0° F in the freezer—and temperature uniformity was even worse, resulting in hot and cold spots.

The Smeg’s best score was for quiet operation, but with so-so energy efficiency and confusing controls, there are better choices.

Top-Freezer Refrigerators

Blomberg BRFT1522SS
We tested the Blomberg BRFT1522SS, $1,000, the first top-freezer refrigerator made by the company. Blomberg typically makes both conventional and French-door bottom-freezer fridges. But maybe it should consider making more top-freezer models because this one topped our tests in that category and made our list of recommended models.

The refrigerator is pretty basic, which is part of its charm, and at 68 inches tall by 28 inches wide by 26 inches deep, it’s small enough for a tiny kitchen. It was a champ at reaching the right temperatures to keep your food fresh and almost as good at maintaining a steady temperature throughout. Our only quibble was that the controls could be a little easier to use.

Insignia NS-RTM21SS7
Insignia is Best Buy’s house brand, so we decided to give one of its refrigerators a try, the Insignia NS-RTM21SS7, $720. At well under $1,000 it’s certainly a good buy and an energy miser. We estimate that it costs $49 per year to run based on the national average electricity rate. But performance was middling, and it’s noisier than many refrigerators in our tests. In brief, the Insignia is bigger than the Blomberg but not a better bet.

Bottom-Freezer Refrigerators

Blomberg BRFB1822SSN
We also tested a new Blomberg bottom-freezer, the Blomberg BRFB1822SSN, $1,700, but it didn’t measure up to its brandmate in performance. Capacity was somewhat larger than the top-freezer model, and it’s still on the smaller side (60x30x31), a good choice if you have limited space.

But this fridge could better. It was able to reach the right temperatures for food storage, but there were warm and cold spots, so you’d have to be careful about where you place your milk and other highly perishable foods. The refrigerator runs fairly quietly, but energy use was just so-so, meaning you’ll pay more to run it.

Fisher & Paykel ActiveSmart RF135BDRUX4
Fisher & Paykel is another brand that makes built-in refrigerators for smaller kitchens, including some that have done very well in our tests. But the Fisher & Paykel ActiveSmart RF135BDRUX4, $1,999, is not one of them and got our poorest score for energy efficiency. Achieving and maintaining a steady temperature was a challenge, and the controls weren’t exactly intuitive. In fact, this model landed at the bottom of our ratings of bottom-freezers.

It’s too bad because the refrigerator has some nice organizational features, especially in the freezer, which has a pullout shelf and three clear pullout bins that help you quickly find what you’re looking for.