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Sonoma Family Life Magazine

Luxury Lemonade

The heat has arrived and with it an opportunity for little lemon barons to make some cash. Just as American as baseball and apple pie is the neighborhood lemonade stand run by our future Fortune 500 CEOs.

Lemonade lesson number one is to have a product that brings your clientele back time after time. Our Luxury Lemonade is just the stuff. It may take a little more time and elbow grease than popping a top off a carton of concentrate, but you just can’t beat the taste.

The secrets are a simple syrup and fresh-squeezed lemon juice—two ingredients that’ll ensure your tiny tycoon’s product stands apart from the other 50-cent options in town. Instead of artificially flavored junk, you’ll get natural, sweet-tart summer bliss that shines out the rest. Ka-ching!


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • Zest of one lemon (optional)
  • 2 cups fresh-squeezed lemon juice, approximately 10–12 lemons
  • 1 gallon cold water
  • 1/2 cup fresh-squeezed fruit juice, optional (strawberry, raspberry, cherry, etc.)
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • Ice


  1. Make a simple syrup by combining sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over low heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Add zest if desired, and steep for 5 minutes. Then remove from heat, strain the zest from the syrup, and set aside to cool. (This mixture can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for a few days.)
  2. Now comes the work—squeezing the lemons. Some hints for extracting juice: microwave lemons for 10 seconds to soften, roll with pressure on a hard surface, and use a citrus juicer.
  3. Add lemon juice and a gallon of cold water to a large pitcher. Add the syrup, additional fruit juice if desired, and lemon slices. Stir well. Pour the lemonade into tall glasses filled with ice.