The best alcohol advent calendars for 2022

Our guide to this year's best alcohol advent calendars – from craft beer to rare whisky and party-ready cocktails

A collage of three alcohol advent calendars by funkin cocktails, single malts of scotland and 24 days of rum on a pink backdrop
(Image credit: Future)

Alcohol advent calendars are the perfect grown-up gift to kick off the festive season in style. 

Sure, chocolate advent calendars are nice and all. But as we age out of having our sweet-eating habits policed, their illicit appeal does wane a bit. Whereas – providing you or your indented recipient chooses to drink alcohol – a boozy little something still has that naughty, indulgent energy many of us seek out at this time of year.

Whoever you're shopping for and whatever their preferred tipple, we're spoilt for choice with this year's alcohol advent calendars. From crowd-pleasing beers by craft breweries to classy single malt whisky and cocktails that self-shake in the can (yes, really) there's a brilliant buy for every taste and budget. Want something specific? Take a look at our favorite gin advent calendars, cheapest prosecco and tasty cheese advent calendars to accompany said festive drinks. Our tried-and-tested guides reveal the crème de la crème in every category. Cheers to that!

The best alcohol advent calendars of 2022

Funkin cocktails ultimate advent cocktail calendar

(Image credit: Funkin)

1. Funkin cocktails ultimate advent cocktail calendar

Best cocktail advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £49.99
Available: Pre-order now; Ships November 1st
Delivery: 2-5 days

Reasons to buy

+
Large variety of drinks
+
Good value
+
Fun packaging

Reasons to avoid

-
Most cocktails are on the sweet side

The gin in a tin revolution has reached fizzy new heights with nitrogen-infused cocktails, which replicate the silky mouthfeel and lively bubbles of a freshly shaken drink. Clever! Funkin cocktails specialise in these clever nitro-cans and have packed 24 of their bestsellers into what must be this year's most party-friendly alcohol advent calendar. 

It contains a range of mixology favourites, mostly on the sweet and fruity side including strawberry daiquiri, pina colada and the notoriously 'refreshing' long island ice tea, so there should be something to suit most drinkers. We also love the sturdy, colourful box and the fact that this is great value, coming in under £50, making it an excellent early Christmas gift for friends.

Black Sheep Brewery Advent Calendar

(Image credit: Black Sheep Brewery)

2. Black Sheep Brewery Advent Calendar

Best mixed-style beer advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £74.95
Available: Now; dispatched November
Delivery: 2-5 days

Reasons to buy

+
Huge variety of beer styles
+
Independent producer
+
Choice of colors 

Reasons to avoid

-
Only if you're not a beer fan

The craft beer scene has exploded in recent years, but Black Sheep Brewery was well ahead of the curve and has been championing independent brewing for 30 years and counting. This Yorkshire-based brewery has evolved from producing traditional cask ales and stouts to contemporary hoppy IPAs and crisp lagers.  

That means this particular alcohol advent calendar is basically beer heaven, no matter what type of pint you or your lucky recipient prefers. It contains 24 full-size bottles and cans, from classic award-winners to limited-edition brews in a variety of styles. You can select from red or green colourways and, as a nice little touch, the 24 perforated doors pop off to become handy beer mats. 

24 Days of Rum Calendar

(Image credit: 24 days of rum)

3. 24 Days of Rum Calendar

The best rum tasting advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £79.95
Available: Now
Delivery: From 2 days

Reasons to buy

+
Sophisticated look and selection
+
Contains tasting glasses
+
Offers an education on rum  

Reasons to avoid

-
If you prefer to drink without the analysis

Probably the most versatile spirit on a bar shelf, rum is distilled all across the globe, comes in a huge range of styles and is as happy sipped neat as it is mixed into a mojito. That makes this one of the most crowd-pleasing calendars on our list - with 24 different rums hailing all the way from Fiji to El Salvador, there's sure to be a tipple to suit. 

This is definitely one of the classiest-looking alcohol advent calendars we've seen, in understated racing car green, and there's a touch of class about what's inside too. As well as rum miniatures, you'll receive two glasses and a tasting sheet to complete as you go, making this one of the best Christmas gifts for couples here. Plus, on December 1st the brand will launch its tasting microsite (opens in new tab) with even more education on each rum they've included and interactive Q&As. 

Single malts of Scotland

(Image credit: Single malts of Scotland)

4. The Single Malts of Scotland

Best luxury whisky advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £250
Available : Now
Delivery: From 2 days

Reasons to buy

+
Packed with fine and rare whisky
+
Looks luxurious 
+
You'll learn about regions 

Reasons to avoid

-
Not for those on tight budgets 

Bargain-hunters, look away now. This may be the most expensive alcohol advent calendar on our list, but it's also the most elevated. This luxe pick contains 25 3cl bottles of fine single malt whisky, plus a handy map of Scotland's five famous whisky-producing regions so you can match the style to its locale. 

Inside you'll find big names, such as the island of Islay's famously peaty and intense Laphroaig, rare Indie hero Ardmore 23 and vintage drams including a 31-year-old single malt from the Speyside region, famed for its sweet and lightly spicy style. The calendar looks the part, in oxblood red with beautiful gold embossing and sweet matching glass bottles adorned in calligraphy script. 

Sandford Orchards' Cider Advent Calendar

(Image credit: Sandford Orchard)

5. Sandford Orchards Cider Advent Calendar

Best cider advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £69.50
Available: November
Delivery: 2-4 working days

Reasons to buy

+
Fun, fruity and refreshing drinks
+
Independent producer 
+
Generous , for the price 

Reasons to avoid

-
More of a box than a calendar

One for fans of the West Country's finest, this feels more like a bumper Christmas crate than a calendar. A little too chunky to be propped up on most shelves, this pared-back illustrated box has 24 cubby holes to dip into and pull out a full-size bottle or can of Devon-brewed cider. 

Inside you'll find a mix of Sandford Orchard's best-known scrumpy including the popular Devon Red, award-winning vintage brew The General and some fun fruity flavours. This family-owned producer is the oldest working cider mill in the country, and these refreshing drinks will make a nice change of Christmas tipple from all that rich red wine and cream liqueur. 

Drinks by the Dram

(Image credit: Drinks by the Dram)

6. Drinks by the Dram Bourbon & American Whiskey Advent Calendar

Best whiskey discovery advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £149.99
Available : Now
Delivery: 3 days

Reasons to buy

+
Unusual and rare drinks to try 
+
Slimline box 
+
Lovely matching branded bottles

Reasons to avoid

-
If experimenting isn't your thing

There's so much more to bourbon than sickly-sweet mass brands, as proven by this excellent alcohol advent calendar from spirit specialists Drinks by the Dram. Inside a sturdy, mantelpiece-friendly navy cube, you'll find a one-stop shop, showcasing the huge variety of complex and elegant whiskeys that the US has to offer.

This unique Christmas gift isn't a budget calendar by any means, but the product here is top-notch, from producers spanning under the radar indies and highly regarded stars of the scene. Look out for spicy and easygoing award-winner Basil Hayden Kentucky Straight or Catoctin Creek, rare pre-prohibition style rye. The 3cl drams come in matching glass bottles with cute wax seals and vintage-inspired labels displaying the brand, style and strength (including plenty over 45% vol, so sip with caution!)

Brewdog Craft Beer Advent Calendar

(Image credit: Brewdog)

7. Brewdog Craft Beer Advent Calendar

The best craft beer advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £59.95
Available : Now; shipping through Octover-November
Delivery: 3-5 days

Reasons to buy

+
Huge variety of beers in every style
+
Contains tasting glass 
+
Funky packaging 

Reasons to avoid

-
If you prefer traditional beers

Brewdog may have started out with a punk 'outsider' ethos, but it's safe to say they are now the big boys of independent craft brewing. This means only good things for this 2022 calendar as the Scottish brewery now has a vast back catalogue of exciting beers to dip into. 

Inside the 100% recycled pulp calendar, you'll find 24 cans plus a festive beer glass to enjoy them in. Amongst big hitters like the classic Punk IPA and Hazy Jane, you'll find four advent calendar exclusives (we like the sound of Just Desserts Stout) plus seasonal limited editions and very fashionable Neipas (new England India Pale). Bonus points for the little pop-out drawer to keep your tasting glass safe and sound.  

The Whisky Exchange 25 Spirits for 25 Days

(Image credit: Whisky Exchange)

8. The Whisky Exchange 25 Spirits for 25 Days

Best mixed spirit advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £175
Available : Early October
Delivery: From 2 days

Reasons to buy

+
All kinds of spirits included 
+
Classy, festive box 
+
Contains rare and luxurious picks

Reasons to avoid

-
A pricy choice

Luxurious and varied, this would make an excellent alcohol advent calendar for any amateur mixologists or adventurous drinkers in your life. It contains 25 mini spirits in 3cl bottles, spanning from classic gin and whisky to on-trend smoky mezcal and unique liqueurs perfect for an after-dinner treat. 

As you'd expect from a retailer known for its high-end selection, The Whisky Exchange has packed this sleek calendar with desirable brands, from recognisable names like Patron tequila to a 29-year-old Frapin cognac that retails at £150 a bottle. The sleek green box is one of the least bulky calendars on this list, so ticks the space-saving box as well as the aspirational drinking one. Yes, it's one of our pricier picks, but you can definitely see (and taste) where that investment goes. 

Smith & Sinclair alcoholic cocktail calendar

(Image credit: Smith & Sinclair)

9. Smith & Sinclair Alcoholic Cocktail Calendar

The best alternative cocktail advent calendar

Specifications

RRP: £49.99
Available : Early October
Delivery : 2-5 working days

Reasons to buy

+
A fun, unique idea
+
More affordable than most 
+
Great for sharing with friends

Reasons to avoid

-
If you'd rather drink your booze

Can't decide between alcohol advent calendars or those filled with sweet treats? Choose both, with this novel offering by gourmet alcohol gummy brand Smith & Sinclair. Each door hides a chewy alcoholic sweetie, in flavours including fruity bellini and mojito, classic g&t and tequila cocktail-of-the-moment, paloma. They're fun, tasty and would be perfect to share as an after-dinner treat with friends (or savour all to yourself in front of Strictly - your call)

The calendar itself is sophisticated-looking and nicely streamlined compared with others on this list, so won't take up too much space.. A word of caution: these really are boozy, around 5% vol per gummy, so resist the urge to pop one in your mouth on the way to work.