Limoncello question

Joined Apr 16, 2006
I'm making my first batch of limoncello.  Recipe consensus seems to be soak the lemon zest in alcohol, then add simple syrup.

I'm using 80 proof (40%) vodka.  I would like to have a high-proof end product, so is there any reason not to make the syrup with more vodka rather than water?  For that matter, is there any reason not to just stir sugar into the original extraction?  I just now stirred some sugar into a bit of voddy, seemed to dissolve perfectly well.

(& not to worry, I am capable of making a vodka syrup without blowing myself up)

Joined Mar 3, 2011
I've been making all sorts of infused liquors for quite a while now. There is nothing wrong with combining all 3 mixtures and then straining the zest out later. The strength of the syrup gives it body, something that will lnger on the tongue when sipped, Why ruin that with something very viscous.   
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Joined Jan 31, 2011
You don't have to make a syrup at all. All you really have to do to get the sweetness and the viscosity is to add the sugar at the beginning of the process, when you add the lemon peel. Shake it gently everyday, at least until the sugar dissolves.
Joined Feb 27, 2008
I just finished putting up 3.5 quarts of the stuff today.

Instead of reinventing the wheel, why not start with Everclear (151 proof) instead of Vodka (80 proof)? Or even 100 proof vodka?

I did 2 one quart jars of Everclear with the zest of 8 lemons in each for about 25 days. To that I added 4 1/2 cups water and 3 cups sugar that were made in to  simple syrup.

Drinking some as I post this.

Joined Dec 4, 2014
I just finished my first batch, only mine was orange-cello. I wondered the same thing, then I remembered that alcohol boils at a lower temperature than water, so if you added it into the water-sugar mixture before boiling, it will probably evaporate before you are done.
Joined Dec 4, 2014
My first batch was cloudy too, until I ran it through about six stages of coffee filters.

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