Italian Limoncello – il limoncello di sofia: forte ma liscio

28 September 2020 By Sophie

When life gives you lemons, make Limoncello, then Orangecello, then Limecello 😉


For the first step:

• 600 ml Pure Grain Alcohol (PGA) – 190 proof Everclear (if possible)

• 12 big, fresh lemons, preferably organics. Use 15-17 lemons if they’re small

For the second step:

• 3 cups of filtered water (you can use Brita Jug)

• 230 g white sugar (must be super white)


First step:

1. Wash the lemons with warm water (hot enough to remove the wax, but not too hot that you can’t dip your hand in it) thoroughly.

2. Zest the lemons, but be careful not to get the pith. I use Microplane ribbons zester, that seems to work the best. The pith will cause your Limoncello to taste bitter.

3. Place zest into a Mason Jar, pour in PGA, cover the jar and let the zest infuse the alcohol in room temperature. Put the jar in a cool dark place for 3 to 4 weeks, until you see the zest turns white and the alcohol is bright yellow in color.

Second step:

1. Combine sugar and filtered water in a clean saucepan, bring to almost a boil, let it simmer for 1 minute, then turn off the heat. Do not stir. Cool the syrup to room temperature.

2. Strain the infused alcohol through a paper coffee filter, transfer it into a 1 liter capacity Mason Jar, squeeze the zest to get all the alcohol out of it.

3. Pour the syrup into the infused alcohol. The solution may clouded up, but don’t worry, it’s totally normal. The process is called ouzo effect. In most cases, your Limoncello will turn clear again as it matures. Return the jar to the cool, dark place and let it mature for 5-7 weeks. The longer it sits the better, because it will give time for the PGA to mellow out, and you will get a smoother Limoncello.

To serve:

Keep your Limoncello in the freezer, and always serve it ice cold.