When you want to dress up a special gathering with a lovely nonalcoholic beverage, look no further. This drink is as pretty, refreshing and flavorful as lemonade gets!
Place the strawberries in a medium saucepan. Add the sugar, 1/2 cup water and lemon juice.
Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and boil slowly, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until the berries are soft enough to crush.
Pour the mixture over a strainer set over a bowl. Press down on the mixture to extract as much juice as possible, scraping the bottom of the strainer often. Taste at this point — if it’s too sour, add sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring to dissolve completely before tasting again.
Just before serving, add the sparkling water and stir. If you like, rub a lemon wedge around the rim of each glass, then dip the rim in sugar. Serve the lemonade over ice.
Make-Ahead Note: Once strained, the berry syrup may be kept in the refrigerator, tighly sealed, for up to 2 days.
Fresh Variation: Use 2-1/2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced, instead of the frozen.