Last Christmas (I Gave you a Beer)

Taps Online

Rob Symes

’Tis the season to be jolly, but if you want to get jolly with some craft beer, is there a creative way to do it? Read on to discover two options for continually gifting great beer throughout the season. Who said the holidays are for kids?

Beer Advent Calendar

Remember how excited you used to get when you popped open the cardboard flap, ate the chocolate and saw what the picture was? Today’s advent calendars have moved far beyond chocolate, and if lego isn’t your scene, there are even alcoholic versions for adults. The problem with these is that by the time you’re thinking about the holidays, the order date has usually passed. No problem – it’s easy to create a version for yourself or a loved one with only a little effort in three easy steps:

  1. Advent calendars contain twenty-four items, so you’ll need to get your hands on the same number of awesome brews. That may sound like a stretch, but it can be as simple as a visit to the local store to compile a mix of favourites and new-to-you brews. Alternatively, you can put in the mileage and visit a few craft breweries to build up a selection of local flavour (plus this can make for an awesome day out).
  2. Package your beer. The easiest route here is to brown bag each one, close the top and number them from one to twenty-four, but you could also use two wine boxes with some kind of flap or seal over each compartment. You can get creative here, and make these suggestions downmarket.
  3. Open the numbered beer on each day and reflect on how the season tastes better with craft beer.

Twelve Days of Beermas

If the solo endeavour of a beer advent calendar lacks the social element you crave in the holiday season, there are ways to enjoy a brew with your crew. Taking its inspiration from the classic song, Twelve Days of Christmas, the beer version eschews the lords a leaping for beers a dry-hopping. Once you’ve gathered together enough people, with a little co-ordination you can enjoy a new beer per day for almost two weeks, and you can have the fun of sharing your thoughts with your friends. It’s like a book club you can drink.

  1. Twelve is the magic number, and in an ideal world you’ll enrol twelve folks to join the band. Each one will purchase a beer, and the sum will make the twelve days of beermas. If twelve proves too hard to wrangle, a smaller number works out too, but participants will need to purchase multiple brands.
  2. Set a price per beer and lay down any further ground rules or themes to help guide people in their choices.
  3. Each participant will need to buy the same beer for every other participant in the group, plus one for themselves. In the idea group size, this means a purchase of twelve beers.
  4. Agree to meet at a central point for distribution. Everyone receives one of each beer. Further drinks and merriment may be involved.
  5. Agree on a drinking order – you’ll all drink the same beer on the same day. If you start on the first day of Christmas, you should wrap up by January 6th.
  6. Share your thoughts in-person or through a social media group of your choice.

Two great ways to make beer a little special over the holidays, and make the holidays a little special with beer.