Christmas countdown begins as booze-filled advent offerings lead the way for alternative calendars in 2019

Gin Advent Cracker
Gin Advent Cracker

We're in the middle of a summer heatwave but attentions are already turning to the array of alcohol-filled advent calendars that have launched ahead of the festive season.

Wine, beer and spirit-lovers can countdown to Christmas and the New Year in style thanks to the growing trend of booze-filled advent calendars.

Chocolate just does not seem to cut it for grown-ups nowadays.

And in recent years companies like first4hampers have been inundated with pre-orders for their festive calendar offerings.

The variety of calendars on offer has grown over the last few years as people look to add a touch of luxury to the Christmas countdown.

There is something for all tastes from artisan gin and premium tonics to whisky, fine wine, fizz and beer.

In the company's popular Sparkle Advent Calendar, each door reveals a 20cl bottle of sparkling wine including Prosecco and sparkling Pinot rose. An extra-glistening treat lies behind the door for the 24th – a 20cl bottle of Laurent Perrier Champagne.

A beer advent calendar contains a mixture of bottles and cans while the wine offering has 24 quarter-bottles of specially selected red, white and rose wines from brands including Founders Stone, Waters Edge, Orario and Quartetto.

The company has also launched a Gin and Premium Tonics Advent Calendar, Tipsy Trees, Luxury Advent Crackers and even New Year countdown calendars ranging in price from £49.99 to £140.

Advent calendars have become big business in recent years.

Net-A-Porter launched a beauty advent calendar containing almost £800 of cult products from brands including Charlotte Tilbury, Sunday Riley, Marc Jacobs Beauty and Victoria Beckham favourite, Barbara Sturm.

Jo Malone's calendar is expected to 'sell out in seconds' when it goes on sale in October. Inside you will find body care and candles, plus new additions that you might not have tried before, such as the Bronze Wood & Leather Cologne Intense.

The Body Shop and Molton Brown have their own offerings at £99 and £175 respectively while Lush is getting in on the act this year with its first ever 24 product calendar – and every single item inside the recyclable chest is full size. Only 500 limited edition advent calendars will be made available.

If the crisp page of a new notebook is high on your list of favourite things, Paperchase’s advent calendar will be right up your street and a touch cheaper at £35. The brand hasn’t revealed the full contents of the 24 doors just yet, but you can expect vouchers, pens, stickers, and a 2020 diary, plus many more stationery delights.

The likes of Aldi and other supermarkets are expected to get in on the advent calendar act once again in a craze that is threatening to become as big as Christmas itself.