Julmust is a Swedish soda that is almost exclusively sold around Christmas.
Although Julmust is a Swedish peculiarity and is practically only bought and consumed in Sweden, it is possible to find the soda in other countries as well. IKEA usually offer julmust in stores around the world (at least around Christmas) and from time to time julmust appears in other places as well, for example Grandpa Lundqvist Christmas Soda in the US and Svensk Julemust in Norway.
In the early years of the 20th century, Robert Roberts and his son Harry dream of creating a non-alcoholic alternative to beer for Christmas. Robert sends young Harry off to Germany to study chemistry and learn about soft drink production, and in Berlin Harry creates his own collection of recipes, which includes the now fabled julmust mixture which is the base (or at least the benchmark taste) of all julmust. Robert and Harry Roberts founded AB Roberts in Örebro in 1910 and the recipe for the mixture for julmust is still a well-kept secret that only a few people within the company know.
The company’s most valuable asset is the recipe. It should therefore be stored and preserved with the greatest care.Will of Harry Roberts
The characteristic dark, rich taste of julmust comes from the secret mixture which is based on hops and malt but which also contains a secret mix of spices and which is brewed by AB Roberts.
Despite the fact that almost all breweries use a mixture from the same company, there can be a rather big differences between different types of julmust. The secret mixture is only a small part of the recipe for the finished drink and manufacturers can to some extent affect the taste when they add sugar, carbonation, water and sometimes other spices.
AB Roberts: www.roberts.se
Carlstedt, Anna. Julmust : Historia, hemligheter, hajp. Gidlunds förlag, 2015.
Nilsson, Sture. … å så en CHAMPIS! – Boken om Roberts. AB Roberts, 2010.