Background: During the 90 s and especially in the beginning of the 00 s research in youth, drug and alcohol consumption increased markedly in Denmark. Much of this research was applied and placed in a dilemma between reproducing existing social problem characterizations of youthful behaviors or providing genuine contribution to the sociological analysis and understanding of youth cultures. From the mid-00 s and forward however, a range of analytical tools were developed at Centre for Alcohol and Drug Research (CRF) in order to understand the relationship between youth, drug and alcohol use and to move beyond the applied perspective into a more social science analytical approach. Aim: The article investigates the relationship developments between drug and alcohol research and youth research in Denmark in general, with a special focus on research conducted at CRF. Specifically, we will focus on how analytical concepts like, e.g., cultural capital, identity, risk, recreational use, problematic use, and social integration have been developed in a Danish context, and how these concepts are informed by existing international research. Conclusion: Besides recounting the story of Danish research on youth, drug and alcohol from the perspective of CRF, this paper will conclude by providing a series of tentative conclusions on how research on youth cultures and drug and alcohol consumption can develop in the future.