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Sep 29, 2006 04:33 PM

How long can I keep home-made limoncello?

I just made Giada de Laurentiis' limoncello, which is basically half lemon peel-infused vodka and half syrup:

So I now have 2 bottles of the stuff in the fridge. It looks and smells quite good. How long I can keep it in the fridge? Can I store it the pantry?

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  1. You can freeze it for a long time, but if you develop a taste for it, it will disappear in no time. It tastes better frosty, so at least keep it in the fridge.

    1. Real Limoncello lasts up to a year easily. I never had it last more than a few months because it is so good.

      That recipe sounds like a quickie version that definately doesn't have the amount of citrus oil or alcohol level that a real limoncello has because the zest should steep for 4-6 weeks and it should be 80-100 proof. That recipe is so watered down, probably around 30 proof, that I would drink within a month refridgerated like the recipe says.

      You might want to look ok the Spirits board for real recipes and information for limoncello.

      1. Don't quite get JMF's reference of "Real Limoncellos lasts up to a year"---Booze has a half life. It doesn't go bad---it just sits there and waits to be drunk....In my humble experience, the only way homemade limoncello lasts up to a year is because you aren't drinking it!

        I read your recipe and while it may not kick booty the way my limoncello does [I make mine with grain alcohol so its a bit, ahh, potent] that doesn't mean it will go bad.

        If you really like the stuff, you won't have to worry because you'll end up drinking it long before it ever goes bad. Stuff it in the freezer and enjoy!

        2 Replies
        1. re: jenn

          The freezer may not be the way to go as this recipe may not have enough alcohol to keep it from freezing. However that would not keep me away.....just think limoncello popsicles

          1. re: jenn

            I say a "year easily" since homemade limoncello has poor quality control since it is made in small batches and usually doesn't have exact measurements. This leads to different alcohol levels, citrus oil and juice levels, sugar levels, and purity of water. Also there are major storage variables such as temperature, light, and air levels in the bottle, which lead to oxidation, uv degradation, etc. All these lead to flavor and color degradation over time. I have made limoncello that has lasted 3 years with no degradation, and ones that were tasteless or nasty in 4 months.

          2. I just tasted the limoncello--the instructions said to chill for at least 4 hours--and I fear it smells better than it tastes. I didn't expect it to be so awfully syrupy, with a bit of a bitter edge (even though I peeled the lemons carefully so there were only traces of pith): JMF and sdv231 may well be right, and I ought to look for another recipe for limoncello and serve this batch at popsicles. What else can I do with it?

            1 Reply
            1. re: pilinut

              If it's too thick, thin it with some alcohol (vodka/grain and maybe some water) and if it's a little bitter why not add sugar to taste?

            2. Pour it over ice and add a shot of club soda and a couple of mint leaves.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Brandon Nelson

                ooo, we did that with a batch of grapefruit "limoncello"---tasted like grown-up fresca!

                It is very easy to end up with a slightly bitter taste but I'm not sure thats always unpleasant. And don't rule it out for being syrupy. The first time I had limoncello, it was at someone's house, it was from Italy [they had just gotten back] and it was very syrupy. Almost too sweet for me but everyone else liked it alot.