Chocolate is so last year. From Prosecco, wine and gin to pork crackling, brownies and curry, let us present you with the best adult alternative advent calendars for 2018.
It’s a pretty brilliant concept when you think about it. For 24 days of December we’ve become accustomed to hiding treats, presents or best yet, alcohol, behind tiny cardboard doors to give us a nice surprise at the beginning of every day.
Frankly, we’d opt in for daily pick-me-ups every day of the bloody year if they’d make advent calendars big enough. So, when the 1 December does eventually roll around, we suggest you go hell for leather and make the most of this tradition and get yourself, or a loved one (it is Christmas after all), a truly indulgent adult advent calendar.
Now, if you want a beauty advent calendar, you’ll have to be quick, as we reckon these ones will sell out long before Yuletide. If booze and food is what you’re after, though, look no further. From specialist gin, rum, wine or prosecco advent calendars to delicious pork crackling offerings, there’s many to choose from. To make things a tiny bit easier, we’ve selected our favourite food and drink advent calendars from all over the UK, from rare whiskeys to craft beers so you don’t need to trawl the internet yourself.
Check out our edit below, and enjoy!
Wine advent calendars
Let’s start on a high. Freixenet’s 2018 Prosecco advent calendar is a vision of sophistication with mini bottles of the brand’s iconic sparkling wines and a selection of luxurious treats to pamper yourself ready for all those Christmas parties. This one’s going straight in our baskets.
Get your kicks with this sparkly advent calendar, teaming with 24 mini bottles of Prosecco, Cava and Champagne.
Filled with reds, whites, a rosé, Port and plenty of fizz, this Virgin Wines advent calendar is made up of only the finest plonk. In fact, it boasts a total of 34 twinkling awards and features lots of customer highly-rated wines.
£79.99, reserve one here
This 12 days of prosecco advent calendar not only comes with half a month’s worth of fizz, but a pot of shimmer powder and 11 chunky plastic straws, too.
Part advent calendar, part booze-laden tree of dreams, the Tipsy Tree makes counting down to Christmas all the more fun. Each of the 24 slots are filled with a different type of fizz and because you can see what they are from the beginning, you’re free to choose your tipple of choice each day.
If you’re looking for bang for your buck, you’ll love that behind each of this advent calendar’s doors lies a quarter of a bottle of wine, including white, red, rose and even mulled. What a very merry Christmas indeed!
Can’t decide whether your love is stronger for gin or Prosecco? Well, now you don’t have to. This pretty advent calendar has both tipples hiding behind its doors.
Gin advent calendars
What is gin without a good-quality tonic hey? Well, you’ve got both at your disposal with this delicious advent calendar.
This gin advent calendar takes pride in showcasing a variety of producers, celebrating artisan craft makers while also including familiar, larger names.
It may look like a cracker, but this creative advent calendar does in fact store 24 tiny, delicious bottles of gin behind its tonally pleasing doors. There are classic styles, London gins, dry gins, Old Toms and even a Christmas flavoured gin to get stuck into!
This one definitely wins the award for most beautiful advent calendar, showcasing this gorgeous illustration. Inside you’ll find some truly flavoursome gins, including independently bottled expressions from world-class producers and tipples created by That Boutique-y Gin Company.
If you think you’ll struggle to polish off a bottle of gin every day of December, try this Tanqueray advent calendar instead. For 23 days you’ll be rewarded with a white chocolate gin truffle before scoring a mini bottle of Tanqueray on Christmas Eve, yay!
We love the juniper berry wreath that aptly decorates the front of this gin-focused advent calendar, concealing the 24 different, handmade 30ml wax-sealed drams inside.
Whisky advent calendars
Every day you’ll discover a different 30ml wax-sealed dram from a selection of America’s finest distillers, from rare small-batch whiskeys to absolute classics.
This jolly-looking advent calendar will send you on an international whisky journey, with 24 wax-sealed bottles hailing from places such as France, England, Scotland, Japan, America, Ireland and more.
From rare Scotch to award-winning drinks from independent distilleries, this calendar contains a selection of the best whiskies available from all over Scotland.
This advent calendar doesn’t house just any truffles on the run up the Christmas, oh no. A whiskey lover’s dream, all the chocolates in this Famous Grouse calendar are flavoured with the stuff, making them even more delicious. What’s more, on the 24 December you’ll get a bottle, perfect for having a Christmas Eve nightcap with!
This advent calendar includes 23 miniatures from across Jack Daniel’s range of whiskeys including Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Fire, Jack Daniel’s Gentleman Jack and Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel.
Exclusive to Asda, coming soon.
Buying for a real whiskey connoisseur? Then you’ll want the old and rare calendar. Some of the sought-after whiskies behind these doors are worth over £2,000, and are bound to thrill someone who knows their stuff.
Spirits advent calendars
This adult advent calendar’s colourful exterior has been designed especially to depict some of Mexico’s famed symbols — the Chichen Itza temple, the Calavera skull used in the Day of the Dead celebrations and the agave plant, which is one of the ingredients used to make the tasty tequila that awaits inside.
From light and sweet to dark and complex rums, this advent calendar has the best of the best from award-winning distilleries around the world.
Liquor advent calendars
Enjoy a delicious Baileys chocolate truffle every day until the 22 December when the real fun starts, and this advent calendar’s doors hide a mini bottle of the creamy liqueur itself up until Christmas eve.
Beer advent calendar
Quench your thirst by cracking open a cold one for the first 12 days of Christmas with this beer advent calendar.
Not only does this beer advent calendar taste great, it looks pretty gorgeous too. What’s more, door 24 hides a special bottle of ‘Ding Dong’ Champagne Style ale for Christmas Day.
Beer might not be the most Christmassy of drinks, but those who are a fan of craft brews will be overjoyed to receive this bundle of beer-y joy.
£74.99, the pipstop.co.uk
Foodie advent calendars
It’s an advent calendar. Of CHEESE. Does life get any better? We think not. This dairy-filled wonder by Ilchester brings together an assortment of Jarlsberg, Applewood, Edam, Red Leicester, Wensleydale and Cheddar. There’s even rumours of a special festive ginger-flavoured edition, which is truly thrilling we think you’ll agree.
£10, available from Asda and Sainsbury’s from mid November.
Get ready for your Christmas dinner with this pork crackling advent calendar, which contains 24 bags of Snaffling Pig deliciousness.
Chocolate advent calendars are so last year, get a proper sugar fix with this brownie box. The 24 brownies come in a variety of mouth-watering flavours, including Mince Pie, Baileys, Mojito, Honeycomb, Salted Caramel, Chocolate Orange, Coconut, Oreo and Peanut Butter.
For a true foodie, there is surely nothing they’d rather an advent calendar be filled with more than new recipes to help them whip up a storm in the kitchen. Enter, the The Spicery’s Curry Legend masterpiece. Each door hides a Christmas recipe, which can be made with the four spices provided.
Images: Courtesy of brands