Limoncello - how long will it keep?

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winemanden

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I tried to make it once. Turned out way too sweet for me. Is it suppose to be that way?
A Limoncello recipe, like any other recipe- wine, cooking, whatever, should only be used as a guide. Your taste is not the same as the person who wrote the recipe. Use your own taste as a guide. If what you made is too sweet, use less sugar next time. Whatever you do, don't give up on it, you'll be missing one of the good things in life if you do.:):)
 

winemaker81

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There's 2 ways to make limoncello that I know of -- steep the lemon zest in alcohol, strain, and add sugar OR steep the zest in alcohol + sugar, then strain.

I use the first method and recommend it. Once you have the lemon base, you can easily experiment with how sweet you want it.
 

BernardSmith

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Totally agree with you, winemaker81, for 2 reasons. The first is the obvious one - until you taste it you really cannot know how sweet this batch needs to be so adding X amount of sugar because that is what the author of the recipe needed to add to their batch is kind of silly. Add what you need - not what they needed. The second reason is less obvious: if you are adding the sugar as syrup then you are reducing the concentration of alcohol. No problem EXCEPT that you are using the alcohol to extract the flavors from the zest. Alcohol is a good solvent but weaker alcohol is a weaker solvent. You want a stronger solvent to extract the flavors effectively and efficiently. Add the sugar after you have strained out the zest.
 

olusteebus

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I was following a recipe and it said to do it all at one time.I will try again as suggested.thanks
 

crabjoe

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I picked up a 1L bottle of everclear (189). Anyone know how many lemons I should use? I'm planning on diluting it down to about 30% abv.
 

Mike Parisi

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I use the peels from 2 pounds of lemons to each 750ml bottle of Everclear 190. 4 weeks on the peelings should be enough. Then I use 6 cups water and 4 cups shugar syrup to dilute it. I get about 3 1/3 750ml bottles of limoncello, which would be around 60 proof (30% abv).

So for a 1L bottle of Everclear, I would be using peelings close to 3 pounds of lemons, 8 cups of water and 5 1/4 to 5 1/2 cups of sugar.
 

CDrew

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There's 2 ways to make limoncello that I know of -- steep the lemon zest in alcohol, strain, and add sugar OR steep the zest in alcohol + sugar, then strain.

I use the first method and recommend it. Once you have the lemon base, you can easily experiment with how sweet you want it.

I agree. You can also use the calculators on limoncelloquest to get the alcohol concentration right. I aim for about 30% (60 proof) at the end, and my dilution syrup is 2 cups sugar per 5 cups water.
 

fsa46

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Like whatever wine and "Cellos" I make I don't guess at the sweetness, once I decided how sweet my family, friends and myself liked it I checked it with a hydrometer to determine the specific gravity. Most of my wines are around SG 1.02 and the "cellos" between 1.06 and 1.08.

Also, I might add, I tried many ways to zest whatever citrus I'll be using and some are better than others,but for me, I prefer putting the fruit in the freezer over night and use a good quality potato peeler. The zest comes of very thin without any pitch and a lot faster then other ways I've tried. I only take out a couple at a time when using this method.
 
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Mike Parisi

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I actually had never tried to calculate the finished ABV, I just have made adjustments over the years to come up with a limoncello that we like. But this thread got me curious, so I looked up how to calculate it. It urns out that my recipse should be pretty close to 30% ABV.

According to the formula, 750 ML of 190 (95% ABV) proof Everclear contains 712.5 ML of alcohol. Dividing that by the desired ending ABV (30%) gives the amount of syrup you need to add. That comes to 1662.5 ML, or 7 cups. I have never measured the volume of the syrup I make (I use 6 cups water to 4 cups sugar), but it seems it should come out to around 7 cups. Does anyone know how to calculate what the volume of a syrup will be given different amounts of water and sugar?
 

Mike Parisi

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Thanks. But it doesn't calculate how much syrup you get from a 6c water / 4c sugar mix
 

Mike Parisi

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OK, thanks.

So My recipe results in 8 cups of syrup, which will result in somewhat less than 30% ABV.
 
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