Limoncello Glasses: Here’s All You Need to Know

Limoncello Glasses: Here’s All You Need to Know


Limoncello glasses

A key element of properly serving and enjoying limoncello is the glassware that you use. That’s true of nearly any alcoholic beverage and limoncello is no exception. I have served a lot of limoncello in my day, so I have a lot of advice when it comes to choosing the limoncello glasses that will maximize your enjoyment. 

What Kind of Glass Should You Use to Drink Limoncello?

Limoncello glasses are typically just clear shot glasses. They may come with handles or insulation to keep the liquid cold longer. You can buy shot glasses of this type at home goods stores in your area and there is a good selection on Amazon as well.

There are a few important considerations when choosing glasses for serving your limoncello. Below we’ll go through those concerns and show some examples of good limoncello glasses from Amazon so you can visualize what I’m talking about. 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…

Does the Color of the Glass Matter?

One of the factors that I assess when determining the overall quality of limoncello is the color. Wine-lovers do the same thing. Does it really change the flavor? No, it’s typically not an indicator of flavor unless the color is really off in some way. For example, a brownish color can mean that a sugar was used that carries too much of its own flavor (typically a molasses taste).

This is pretty much what my own glasses look like:

So, if you want to fully enjoy your limoncello and appreciate the color, you’ll need a clear glass. It’s easy to drink too much limoncello too quickly on a hot day (or any other day) so a small, clear glass is also in order. Limoncello glasses tend to be shot glasses or at least some very close riff on a shot glass. You’ll see a few that are opaque, but even those tend to be white so you can look inside the glass and see the color against a white background. 

For a classier look, grappa glasses also work:
A delicate whiskey glass is also a great choice:

With a Handle or Without?

Limoncello—it should be said in case it isn’t obvious—is a sipping liqueur. It’s meant to be enjoyed as a digestif (after-dinner drink to aid digestion). So it’s intended for slow consumption. It’s also great for enjoying with friends, like pretty much any other liqueur. All of this puts it a bit at odds with the thermal dynamics of the limoncello itself. 

Standard shot-glass-with-a-handle:

As we’ve mentioned elsewhere, limoncello should be served ice cold—directly from the freezer. That freezing temperature is a core part of the appeal and it creates a color and consistency in the limoncello that is different from the same liqueur at room temperature. 

Great for keeping that "homemade" vibe:

Therefore, it can be very useful to have a limoncello glass that somehow helps you maintain a cold temperature while you enjoy it. That’s another reason to have small glasses, but even with small glasses a sipping liqueur can use some help staying cold. That’s why some limoncello glasses have handles on them or have some insulation to maintain a cooler temperature while you enjoy it. 

No handle, just elegantly insulated:

Limoncello Gift Sets with Glasses

The reason for seeking out limoncello glasses is often to give them as a gift. This makes sense. Because while I love limoncello, I have never bothered to purchase myself a gift set of limoncello glasses and a carafe because it seems a little over-the-top (even for me, which is saying something). But would I enjoy them? Sure! Therefore, they make a great gift for the right person. Here are a couple examples of limoncello gift sets for that special limoncello lover in your life. 


Q: Where can I buy limoncello glasses?
A: Click the links above, Amazon has these and other glasses so you’ll almost certainly find what you need. 

Q: Does the carafe make any difference to the taste?
A: No. It makes sense to aerate some wines before you drink them but that makes no sense for limoncello. It’s just for looks.

Q: Does the limoncello need a cap in the freezer?
A: Yes, not having a cap in the freezer is just kind of gross. 

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(4) comments

Hew December 29, 2021

I love the glasses in the phot you have at the top of the page. Any idea where they can be purchased?

Ben April 12, 2022

No, those belong to my photographer!

Dean May 17, 2022

I was going to ask the same, They are nice because of the shape, still small, and can add ice. Do search for 4 to 6 oz. Old Fashion Glass Ware. Sometimes they are also called Rocks… but those tend to be larger like a cup (8 oz).

Dean May 17, 2022

Ben, I stumbled onto this site like so many others. Great recipe. The proportions are better than most I read. I don’t like it too sweet.

I did an experiment and did one bath exactly as you said and the other just chopping Myer Lemons into quarters – juice and all. To me, they seemed the same, but the one with juice wasn’t as clear, but the prep was a whole lot faster. Myer Lemons have a thinner rind and are sweeter than those big yellow ones with the big white pitch like a pomelo. I then froze the lemon quarters and use them in martinis.. I only let mine sit for 3 weeks, so they are still somewhat yellow.

Now I am going to try your recipe with key limes and clementine oranges

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