1 ¼ cups sugar
1 ¼ cups fresh lime juice (about 9 limes)
3 pounds dark cherries, such as Bing or Burlat, pitted
2 ¼ cups best-quality black cherry or plain vodka
1 (750 ml) bottle sparkling water
Bring sugar and 1¼ cups water to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat; let cool completely. (Makes about 2 cups syrup.) Syrup can be refrigerated in an airtight container up to 1 month.
Put lime juice into a medium nonreactive bowl. Halve half of the cherries; add all cherries to lime juice. Stir in syrup. Refrigerate at least 1 hour (up to overnight).
Stir cherry mixture and vodka in a large serving bowl. Fill 12 glasses with ice. Spoon ½ cup cherry-vodka mixture into each glass. Top with sparkling water; serve immediately.
Reused from Martha’s Entertaining by Martha Stewart. Copyright ©2011 by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. Photographs by Hugh Stewart. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
For more summer entertaining ideas, visit marthastewart.com