I’ve been thinking about The Sun Also Rises and, more specifically, Lady Brett Ashley a lot lately. Which, probably, haven’t we all? Isn’t that what we are all just thinking about all the time? Literary heroines from the 20s? Maybe not. Well, but I’ve been thinking about Brett lately because I’ve been thinking about Daisy Buchanan and about how reviled Daisy is and how it’s always Hemingway who gets picked on for being a misogynist (which, fine) but how it was really Fitzgerald who created perhaps the most loathsome female characters ever. And sure, Fitzgerald doesn’t have a sterling reputation as a feminist either, but he seems to get way more of a pass than Hemingway does. And it was Hemingway who gave us the amazing Brett Ashley, so how bad can Hemingway be? (Pretty bad, I guess, but that’s not really the point right now). Anyway, Brett is one of my favorite female characters of all time, not because she is likable, (although I like her) but because she is honest. And while, normally, honesty is not even something that I care so much about—especially in fictional characters—because a person’s ability to be honest is sometimes confused with a person’s ability to be decent, and therefore tends to make the honest person self-righteous and terrible and even brutal about such slippery things like the truth, when it comes to Brett, I like it.
But so anyway. Sangria. The Sun Also Rises is set in Spain, of course, and an awful lot of wine, among other things, is consumed. And also, it’s the unofficial start to summer this coming weekend, which means that it’s the perfect time to start drinking cold, fruity beverages. Plus, the Times had this great article, “Refreshing New Sangrias to Chase Away Bad Memories,” about the pleasures of sangria, and so I felt like we had reached (or at least, I had reached) sangria saturation point. The time had come to figure out the 5 best places for sangria in Brooklyn and plan out how to drink at them all. Not over the course of one weekend, although that’s probably what Brett Ashley would do. No, over the course of this long, syrupy summer that we’re about to enter. Drinking sangria at these Brooklyn spots will guarantee that the days and nights will be as pleasantly effervescent as if you were in Spain itself. Well, or close enough anyway.