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Classic Literature Books as Beverages

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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at JMU chapter.
Pride and Prejudice

If I had to relate a drink to “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen, it would be green tea and matcha, both hot and iced. The flavor profile of green tea is known for being fresh and delicate, and the initial taste is often light and grassy, reminiscent of springtime. The book has the feeling of romance and the crisp air of spring growth, and for this reason, the first answer that came to mind is the subtle sweetness of green tea and matcha. There’s crispness found in the beverage also, similar to the sensation of biting into a crisp apple or cucumber. Some people do not like the earthy taste of green tea, but others find it to be both energizing and delicious.

The Great Gatsby

When I think of “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald, which is a personal favorite classic of mine, the glamour of the 1920s with the parties and the new age comes to mind. Even though the ending of the book is quite dark, the story throughout is more lighthearted in my opinion. For these reasons, I see a citrusy, bubbly drink representing “The Great Gatsby”, such as champagne or lemonade. Champagne is recognized by its effervescent bubbles and bright acidity, along with its celebratory air of elegance and finesse. Lemonade is both sweet and tart simultaneously, and again represents brightness and vivacity.


I immediately thought of black coffee and espresso for “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley. The story is dark and brooding and asks questions of society that we have not yet determined the answers to. For me, “Frankenstein” is a manifestation of sleepless nights and monochrome settings, along with the bitterness and intensity of ambition. And a dark coffee or espresso represents this effortlessly through the bold richness of the brew, in addition to the smoky flavor that permeates it.

Little Women

Anytime I think of “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott, I recall better times, a cozy setting of family and home. The entire story feels nostalgic at this point, and the 2019 movie version of this book only emphasizes this feeling. “Little Women” is a tale of trials and tribulations throughout childhood and beyond, and discusses inspiring topics relative to love and life itself. Because of these reasons, the drink I would give this book is apple cider or iced tea – the former for the colder months and the latter for the warmer. Apple cider is sweet and crisp, and the comforting warmth of its flavor holds an amount of reminiscence for most people. Iced tea, on the other hand, has a similar effect, its taste offering a cool and refreshing escape from the heat of summertime.

Romeo and Juliet

Everyone knows this one – arguably the most well-known of Shakespeare’s works, spreading into popular culture as it was translated into several movies, shows, and books. The drink I would give this book is a rosé wine. The taste of rosé is often described as refreshing and crisp, with a light to medium body. It typically offers a fruity profile, with notes of strawberries, raspberries, and sometimes cherries, lending it a gentle sweetness. There’s a subtle floral quality that adds a layer of complexity, reminiscent of rose petals. For a non-alcoholic option, I would say cranberry juice fits the vibe of the book the best. The drink has a distinct sweetness, but it’s offset by a sharp acidity that lends a slightly bitter aftertaste. Similarly, Romeo and Juliet’s love story began as a romantic, sordid affair of sweetness, but it ended in tragedy for both of them.

The Odyssey

“The Odyssey” is one of the first classics I had ever picked up, expecting it to be boring, but Homer wove a tale of exciting adventure and perilous journeys across a world of Greek mythology. The drink I would give this work is spiced ale, which invokes the feeling of a fantastical realm of travel and taverns. Generally speaking, ale can be described as having a malty sweetness, often with notes of spicy earthiness. There’s a balanced bitterness from the hops, which can range from mild to pronounced. For a non-alcoholic option, root beer has a similar vibe to the simplicity of “The Odyssey”.

Rye Baker - JMU freshman I love writing, Gilmore Girls, and autumn. I enjoy listening to Taylor Swift, Lana del Rey, and Hozier. My favorite movie series is Harry Potter, and my favorite classic is The Great Gatsby. I have a tuxedo cat named Felix.