Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
By Hannah Howard

It’s an undisputed fact: ladies love sangria — bitches and nonbitches alike. It’s festive, fancy, and un-mess-up-able.

Spaniards love sangria. If you have a Y chromosome, and you drink sangria, you’re doing something right. If you’re throwing a party, sangria never, ever hurts. Sangria lips are sexy.

Here’s the recipe for the best sangria ever:

Have a really good friend around. Wake up early, not in a virtuous way but because the sun is shining and the day is sparkly and you are having short rib-themed anxiety dreams. Go for iced coffee and find someone selling fruit and veggies and sunflowers on St Nicholas Avenue, where it juts down into a steep hill and you have to brace your ankles so your sandals don’t flop off into the traffic.

Ogle the huge sunflowers, and the fuzzy, fragrant, bulbous peaches. Buy some pluots, thumb the smooth, taut flesh, stick ‘em in your bag.

Go to the wine store in your new neighborhood, where a peppy girl in a crop top is working. She is super cute. You tell her you are looking for brandy. She presents an itty bitty bottle.

“Do you have a bigger bottle?”

She reaches for a slightly less tiny but still pretty tiny brandy.

“We’re making a giant picture of sangria!”

“Oh! You should use the peach brandy. It’s great in sangria.”

Buy the peach brandy. Pick up two bottles of cheapish Tempranillo. Its dark depth, lush texture, and cherry-blackberry-tart fruitiness are going to sing when jacked up with other goodies. Pick up two more bottles. Why not?

“Do you have a big pitcher?” The wine girl asks, “You need a big pitcher, for sure.”

“Not really. Where can we get one around here?”

She directs us to the everything-is-cheap store, where I splurge on a giant $7 plastic container.

Your arms are really full now. Text a friend: “can you bring some ice?”

Go home. It is hot enough that your skin is hot, your brain is hot. Bring the fan you got from Duane Reade into the kitchen, direct it on your face.

Turn on the radio. Chop up your pluots into candy-sweet pluot cubes. Slice oranges, thin. Glug glug glug the brandy and red wine into your new gigantic pitcher. Taste. Add some mouth-puckeringly tart cherry juice, because you have it in your fridge, and seltzer, for bubbles.

Have people over. Welcome them with big glasses of your creation. The glasses will bead up with sweat in the summer heat. Hug everyone. Drink up. Repeat.

Get sleepy. Switch to negronis, or the vodka your friend has infused with lemon and mint, or keep drinking sangria, because you made an immense pitcherful. Toast to new beginnings. Maybe kiss someone with sangria-mouth. Fall asleep fast, and happy.

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