If you engage in the labor of love that is hand crafting limoncello—and you’re giving some away as a gift—you should probably go the extra mile and make it look incredible. The best way to do that is to put it in bottles that properly display the liqueur, and even enhance the beauty of it. I’ve been making and gifting limoncello for over a decade, so I have some advice for you on how you can make your limoncello look amazing.
Limoncello bottles are just regular liqueur bottles that happen to contain limoncello, so you can buy them from Amazon as well as from specialty glass companies such as the Bottle Store or Berlin Packaging.
Limoncello bottles come in various shapes; there isn’t one standard appearance for a bottle of limoncello. The glass is typically either clear or frosted so that you can see the attractive yellow color of the liqueur. However, there are a few important considerations when choosing bottles for showcasing your home-made limoncello.
We’ll address those considerations below and show some examples of good limoncello bottles from Amazon so you can visualize the different types. You can also just buy them there of course. Amazon loves it when you do that and I even get a small commission (woohoo!). So without further ado…
This choice is really a matter of preference and I have two distinct use cases for my own limoncello. The first is for when I’m creating my own limoncello for my own experiments or for my own enjoyment. If it’s just for me, I always use clear bottles.
The reason is that I want to have an unfiltered view of the color and clarity of the limoncello. Some people simple prefer the way limoncello looks in a clear bottle as well. The ones below are reasonably priced on Amazon and they are square, which I think looks nice:
The second use case is giving limoncello as a gift or favor. If I’m giving the limoncello away, I’ll often use frosted bottles. This is a bit of a hack to make it look like it “should.” Limoncello is usually (and properly) served directly from the freezer, so the bottle has a frosty appearance.
If you want to maintain that look at room temperature, then a frosted bottle is the solution. Some commercial limoncello producers use this trick and I do think it makes the limoncello look better in the bottle. The one drawback is that frosted bottles are pretty much uniformly more expensive than clear bottles.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you as one isn’t decidedly better than the other. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Another issue is how you cap the bottle. It is pretty common for smaller limoncello bottles to come with corks and those typically work fine. Sometimes they can be too loose so I generally don’t trust them as much unless the bottle remains upright. Sometimes mine end up on their sides in the freezer, so I don’t use corks that much. The last thing you want is limoncello all over the bottom of your freezer. Corks are cheap though, and they have a distinctly home-made appearance if that’s the look you’re going for.
Plastic caps with corks are a better option for securely capping the bottle. This is the type of cap that typically comes with commercial limoncello and they work well; I’ve never had one of these spill in the freezer. They also look more professional which is a different and more modern aesthetic. This is the route I usually go because I just prefer my limoncello to look like it was professionally produced. You can even shrink wrap the top if you want to go crazy:
The last option is a swing top. These are a little fussy to use; they can get twisted up such that you’ll think you’re trying to solve a Rubic’s Cube, but they are extremely secure. They have a rubber gasket and lock down tight so nothing ever escapes. I use these for my experimental batches but I never give them away because they have a home-brewed beer look to them that I don’t care for. But again, that’s personal preference.
A very common use case for creating your own limoncello is to use them as party or wedding favors. If this is your use case, then you’ll be looking for some bottles that are smaller than the standard 750ml or 375ml bottles. The 250ml size is also fairly common and I like this size if the group isn’t huge. If you want 100 of them for a wedding, that size will likely be too large and costly though. A 100ml bottle is perfect for larger groups as it is around 3 shots worth of liqueur and the bottles are less expensive (though there are generally fewer options in that size).
Q: Where can I buy limoncello labels to go on the bottles?
A: Click the links above, Amazon has these and other glasses so you’ll almost certainly find what you need.
Q: What are the common limoncello bottle sizes?
A: A full bottle is 750ml, and a half bottle is (quite sensibly) 375ml. Smaller 250ml bottles are very common and you’ll find bottles at 100ml, 50ml and 30ml pretty commonly as well. 30ml is roughly one ounce of liqueur.
Q: Can you get custom limoncello bottles?
A: If you mean “custom-looking” then all you need is a bottle, a cap and a label. This is how most people customize their bottles and it’s good enough for me. If you mean you want a bottle shaped like a lemon, then yeah, you can do that but it’s going to be very expensive. A specialty glass manufacturer can do that.