In my humble little opinion, limeade always trumps lemonade. Always. Why? Well…I’m not exactly sure; maybe it’s the extra kick of sour, or maybe it goes back to the times I used to eat whole limes with my Mom while watching bad daytime television. It was our little secret, because if you tell someone you eat whole limes while watching Jerry Springer, judgement ensues. Trust.
I wasn’t introduced to limeade until I had to go on a grocery run for my best friend’s grandmother, Mimi. She’s a badass of a woman who’s never afraid to speak her mind. She’ll tell you the cheap wine you bought sucks, or that the bread you took too long to bake is as hard as a rock. She also plays beer pong like a fratboy (seriously). Can you tell that I like her…a lot? Mimi’s turning 90 years old in September and she’s demanding a party, and I couldn’t agree more with her.
Since she’s an ardent fan of limeade, I’m suggesting that someone make this pretty drink for her, because the only thing better than limeade is watermelon juice. So why not put them together? Oh and that sprig of rosemary is an additional kick of awesomeness. I got the idea from this place in West Hollywood called Lemonade. Not gonna lie, when I first tried lemonade with rosemary in it I was a little suspect, but it turned out to be dynamite. It’s not too prevalent, just a small hint. This drink is the definition of refreshing. The only thing that might make it better? Vodka. Lots of vodka.
Yields about 6-8 small glasses
1 1/2 cups of water
1/2 cup of sugar
1/4 tsp of lime zest
1 cup of lime juice (from 7 limes)
1 (3-pound) watermelon, trimmed and cubed (I used a quarter of a 12-pound watermelon)
2 sprigs of rosemary (optional)
Place 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of water, and lime zest in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir mixture until the sugar is dissolved. Take off heat and add to lime juice and stir.
Grab a colander or sieve and line it with a cheesecloth. Then place it over a medium or large bowl. Dump the lime juice/sugar mixture through the cheesecloth to catch any lime zest.
Purée watermelon cubes in a blender or food processor with 1/2 cup of water. Dump the puree into the cheesecloth and let it drain for 10 minutes.
When all of the watermelon purée has been strained, gather up the corners of the cheesecloth and twist them together to trap the dregs inside. Squeeze the package firmly to expel all the remaining liquid. Add remaining 1/2 cup of water and mix well. Add 2 sprigs of rosemary and cover bowl. Refrigerate for 2 hours to chill.
Serve with lime and rosemary garnish.