Those retro touches include rounded-off lines and large metal handles that are also reversible. The aesthetic is clean, not gaudy, and would work whether your kitchen was decorated by Harriet Nelson or Philippe Starck. It's also substantially less expensive than many other full-blown retro products. That means young millennials—like DeLuna himself—who are working with a tight budget can deck out their kitchen without emptying their savings accounts in the process.
Not only does this fridge look awesome, it’s one of the best performing bottom freezers on the market today. With a great sense of style, superb performance, and a low price tag, this fridge really has it all.
More than just a pretty package, the GE Artistry ABE20EGEBS (MSRP $1,199) succeeded in standing up to our barrage of fridge tests. With impeccable overall performance, this machine should suit any consumer.
Cool and even
Despite its nebulous 0-9 control knobs, the main fridge compartment turned out to be spot on, with a minuscule fluctuation of just ±0.09°F over 72 hours. Temperatures remained a little under 37°F throughout most of the fridge, averaging 36.21°F at the top and 36.8°F in the middle. That’s great for fresh food storage, while the extra warmth near the bottom—averaging 38.41°F—is better for produce.
Even though the freezer was also set to 5, it turned out to run just a bit warmer. The top averaged 1.83°F, while the bottom got up to 2.9°F. A gap of just one degree throughout the whole compartment is very good, as is the standard fluctuation of just ±0.16°F. Turn the thermostat down a notch or two, and this freezer should be flawless.
Unique exterior, but familiar on the inside
The unique design elements on the Artistry fridge are actually quite subtle: Horizontal chrome handles hearken back to the heavy chrome hinges on your grandparents’ icebox. They’re placed high enough that opening the door felt easy and natural without forcing us to stoop.
Near the top of the fridge is an old-school GE logo. It breaks up the expanse of the fridge door, and creates a sense of balance with the handles.
The high gloss black really pops compared to a typical matte finish, and looks great with the chrome handles. Unfortunately, smudges can appear very prominently depending on how the light in your kitchen hits the fridge, so keep some cleaner handy if you've got a house full of kids.
Each appliance in the Artistry series is also available in white—for the fridge, it's the ABE20EGEWS—which should do a better job of hiding fingerprints.
On the inside, you're met with an otherwise basic GE bottom freezer. Full-width shelves don’t offer as much customizability as half-width ones, but are still relatively light for easy removal and cleaning.
The freezer uses wire shelves, so make sure any bags of frozen vegetables don’t have any rips that could lead to an avalanche of peas. Both sections have plenty of door storage to supplement, but none of it is adjustable.
Highly effective crisping
Even without an adjustable humidity slider, the twin fridge drawers blew our moisture retention test out of the water. (Into the water? You get the point.) Over the course of three days, our test materials lost a mere 0.12 grams of moisture per hour, well below average. Great news for salad lovers, but you might want to keep fresh fruit in a bowl on the counter instead.
A fundamentally great job
Performance wise, there really wasn’t anything wrong with this fridge. Sure, the thermostat uses a 0-9 scale, but that didn’t stop the fridge from churning out perfectly ideal temperatures. (For reference, we used the 5 setting for both compartments.)
The freezer did run a bit warm, but it was consistent both over time and throughout the compartment. Just turn the freezer dial to 6 or 7 instead of 5 to lower the temperature, and you’ll be just fine.
Crispers did a fantastic job retaining moisture despite the lack of an adjustable humidity slider. I mean, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? With great energy efficiency to boot, the Artistry really manages to serve up a complete package of superior performance.
When it comes to features... well, there aren't any. Controls can be used to adjust the temperature, and that’s it. You do get a removable ice bucket, but there's no icemaker to go with it.
For in-depth performance information, please visit the Science Page.
The Artistry’s freezer chilled room temperature test materials down to 32°F in just one hour and 26 minutes. While that’s not setting any records, it’s definitely on the better side of average. Frozen food—unless it’s incredibly delicate, like a top-quality piece of steak or a prime cut of salmon—shouldn’t experience much of a quality reduction when thawed.
Additionally, the freezer nailed the thawing test. After 36 hours without power, internal temperatures only rose to 27.67°F.
Bringing retro back
If you want an appliance that will blend into the background, don’t buy the GE Artistry ABE20EGEBS. If, however, you want a fridge with an unusual aesthetic that will make a statement in your kitchen, check it out.
Superior performance, excellent efficiency, and a comfortable user experience only add to the package.
Retailers sell this beauty for about $1,000, give or take thirty bucks, in both black and white. That makes it more affordable than most other bottom freezers of a similar size. What’s more, the entire series—fridge, oven, microwave, and dishwasher—has a collective MSRP of about $2,416.
Whether you’re looking for a new fridge or plan to deck out your entire kitchen, the Artistry series provides consumers with a great choice for an even greater price.
Roomy enough, and very efficient
The Artistry’s interior is straightforward, with three full-width shelves, two drawers, and some buckets on the door. These surfaces provide you with 10.98 usable cubic feet of space, more than enough for anyone from a single consumer to a small family.
The freezer has just one shelf, as well as a large drawer and a small bin on the door. It’s not huge, but the 4.62 usable cubic feet is fairly impressive for a bottom freezer. The Artistry comes with a removable ice bucket—though no icemaker—which can be used to store ice or anything else you want to put in there.
Even more impressive is the excellent rate of energy consumption. This fridge only requires 0.06 kWh to cool each usable cubic foot. In more practical terms, this means you’ll have to pay only $29.22 per year—at a fixed rate of $0.09 per kWh—to power the appliance.
Meet the testers
Logistics Manager & Staff Writer@ReviewedHome
Matthew is a native of Brockton, MA and a graduate of Northeastern, where he earned a degree in English and Theatre. He has also studied at the Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin and spends most of his free time pursuing a performance career in the greater Boston area.See all of Matthew Zahnzinger's reviews
Checking our work.
We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.Shoot us an email