The days of chocolate advent calendars as your only option are long gone. You can now get 24 of almost anything to help you count down to the big day - as our best beer advent calendar guide proves.
With beer advent calendars, we’re not talking about a few basic lagers you'll find in the local convenience shop. Far from it. Many of the drinks inside are specially brewed for the calendar.
UPDATE: There's only days left until you officially start counting down Christmas, so if you want to get the best beer advent calendar for you then you better be quick!
There's a lot to choose from too, unlike picking your favourite chocolate brand. Some offer a range of different styles, others are suited to those who like strong beer, and some come from breweries themselves.
We won’t spoil any of the beer line-ups here, but you can click the links to lists, where available, if you’d rather be sure what you’re buying. Otherwise you’ll be able to get an idea from this article and leave them a surprise.
A large crate of beer is 24 bottles or cans so it’s perfect for an advent calendar. They often sell before December so grab one while you can. This shortlist gives you a head start on the best options. You can be safe in the knowledge as well that these have all been taste tested by the experts at ShortList.
Are you a beer fanatic? Vote on our shortlists of the best craft beer and best alcohol-free beer to have your say on the top brews.
- The best beer snacks, revealed
Best beer advent calendars
1. Beer Merchants
Despite being around for many years this is, bottle shop, bar and online retailer Beer Merchant’s first ever advent calendar.
If you like the idea of a trip around various different countries then this is the advent calendar for you with premium beers from the likes of Omnipollo, Garage Beer, Pohjala and more. There are 10 countries and 14 styles represented here.
2. Billy Franks
Don’t just want beer for advent? Then the Bill Franks calendar is a great choice, coming with 12 UK beers and 12 bags of award-winning craft jerky including beef and citrus IPA, but one will be an exclusive mystery flavour.
If you like, there’s also a completely beer option for £119 with beers from the UK, US and Europe.
3. Wise Bartender
Beer advent calendars don’t have to mean drinking alcohol and Wise Bartender has a great option for anyone off the sauce this Christmas. You get 24 beers, a maximum 0.5% abv, in a range of styles including IPA, lagers, stouts and wheat beers.
Breweries featuring for 2022 include UNLTD, Brulo, Nirvana, Nittenauer, Menabrea, Havabier and Northern Monk.
Finchampsted’s Siren is back with another corker of an advent calendar with a large range of beer styles from lagers to sours to winter warmers - some of which will be infused with nitro.
Importantly, you’ll get beers that are exclusive to the advent calendar so you can lord it over everyone on social media.
Hailing from Sheffield, Abbeydale are a staple of the UK’s brewing scene but this is their first advent calendar. Your box of countdown beers will include 24 different brews, all in 440ml cans.
You’ll get a combination of classics like Moonshine Pale Ale, new releases such as Restoration Baltic Porter as well as experimental Funk Dungeon mixed fermentation beers for those that like something more out there.
Alternatively, you can get an advent of just Moonshine so you know what’s coming every day.
6. Brew York
If the idea of 24 beers, and the cost of that many, feels a bit too much then Brew York has a great option with their half-size option.
As well as some core beers you’ll get some specific Christmas brews such as a Stollen Milk Stout, Cranberry, Redcurrant Apple and Cinnamon Pastry Sour and a mouth-watering Barrel Aged Peanut, Pecan, Maple and Vanilla Imperial Milk Stout.
7. HB&B Big Beery Advent Calendar 2022
Back for its 8th edition, Hop Burns & Black claims to have the longest running beer advent calendar in the UK. It’s one of the more expensive on the market but craft purists will be getting a hand-picked selection of top-toch special brews from the likes of Deya, Verdant, Pressure Drop, Boxcar, Brick, Burnt Mill and Pastore.
It will all be wrapped up by hand in a brand new box and also includes a £10 voucher to use in January, perfect for when you need a top-up but the bank balance isn’t looking so great after the festive period.
One of the best value options on the market, Thornbridge’s advent returns for its first encore and contains 16x 440ml and 8x 330ml cans.
As usual, you can expect a range of strengths and styles and the Bakewell brewery has also thrown in some additional gifts putting the total value of the calendar at over £90.
9. St Austell & Bath Ales
If you’re more of an ale drinker then this advent calendar from two of Britain’s finest will do the trick nicely. You’ll get 24 beers to pull out of individual windows from the particularly classy box.
It’s a mix of 330- and 500ml bottles including classics from each brewery - Tribute, Proper Job and Gem - with a mix of Small Batch Brews that are more unusual in terms of style and abv, all selected by head brewer, Georgina Young.
10. Edinburgh Beer Box
An ongoing project, this is essentially a subscription box, but there’s a special advent calendar option which includes a stunning illustration of the Edinburgh skyline.
This year there are no less than seven options for you so along with the main one, you can get editions for sours, lagers, wee cans, low and no, gluten free and Leith.
Sales will help support Cash-for-Kids and the likes of Vault City, Donzoko, Moonwake and Newbarns are now involved for 2022.
11. Beer 52 Beer Advent Calendar 2022
Another affordable option comes from subscription service Beer 52, although you don’t have to sign up to anything to get this advent calendar.
The price includes free delivery and you’ll get 24 beers, from the likes of Turning Point, Wiper And True, Basqueland and Double-Barrelled. There's also a limited edition tasting glass thrown in, too, as well as the chance to win a whole bunch of prizes.