On the first day of Christmas, my true love … was so pished

What are you getting up to on one of the best nights out of the year in Denmark?

Christmas Brew: J-Day!
Nov 6, from 20:59 onwards; all over Denmark; free adm; tuborg.dk

Sing along now (12 days of Christmas tune):

‘On the 25th annual J-Day my true love Carlsberg gave to me: Five free Tuborg Julebryg!’

‘Four J-day bunnies, three jovial elves, two blinking J-Day hats … and truck load of boozy shenanigans.’


Christmas in Denmark does not officially begin until this most-anticipated event and you better be ready for it – it’s J-Day!

This is the day when the Danish brewery Tuborg releases its annual Chritsmas beer, the ‘Julebryg’, at exactly 20:59 on the first Friday of November.

For many it is the most joyous time of the year as Tuborg trucks pull up at different bars and cafes in the city, distributing free beer while cheerfully singing a traditional Tuborg Christmas brew song. The bars tend to be filled with happy customers embracing the Christmas spirit. Many dress up in the Tuborg blue-coloured Santa hats and make a real carnival out of it.

“Since its inception in 1990, J-Day has been part of Danish Christmas traditions, in line with the Christmas tree on City Hall Square, Christmas Lunches and sending Christmas cards,” said Jeppe Boel, the brand manager at Carlsberg Denmark.

“All of these Danish Christmas traditions indicate that we are now entering the Christmas period and this year’s J-day is particularly special because we are celebrating its 25th anniversary.”

The legendary Julebryg advert is probably the most famous in Danish history

With a relatively short shelf-life of 10 weeks – although that’s a slightly longer festive season than the Victorians had in mind when they promoted the celebration of Christmas in the 19th century! – the Danes really make the most out of it and it has remained a crowd favourite guaranteed to bring the crowds out. Until not long ago it was on Thursday, but they moved it to Friday because so many students were too hungover to attend school the next day.

The Tuborg Christmas brew is a mixture of three beers: KB Hvidtøl, Tuborg FF and Tuborg Guld. It is bottom-fermented, wienener beer brewed on lager, with a fresh aroma of caramel malt and to complete the special brew liquorice is added. It is also brewed to complement most Scandinavian Xmas recipes.

So why not join the celebration and start the holiday festivities with a ‘Skål’! Have a cracker tonight, but remember:

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