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Revisiting a Couple Brands of Limoncello


Rometti and Fabrizia limoncello

A day of cleaning uncovered some hidden treasures in one of my pantries so I thought I'd share the good fortune. I found a couple long-lost bottles of commercial limoncello that I had previously reviewed. Both of them are now roughly three years old so I thought I'd taste them side by side and see how the aging affected them. 

One bottle was from Fabrizia and the other from Rometti, both are craft producers that I had reviewed favorably in the past. I should start by saying that you should drink your limoncello sooner than this and this isn't really a fair test of either brand because this is a fringe use case at best. Most people lack the willpower to leave bottles of limoncello around this long.

As you can see from the picture below, there's a substantial color difference in the limoncellos at this point. The Fabrizia is much lighter than the Rometti. That alone doesn't mean much, but the color carries through to the character of both. 

Review of two brands of limoncello

Neither of the brands had much of a lemony flavor at this point, which is why you shouldn't leave them on the shelf this long. But the Fabrizia had a lighter and brighter flavor, much like its color. This bottle of Fabrizia clocks in at 27% alcohol whereas the Rometti sits at 32% and that's a sizable difference that shows up in the flavor.

The flavor of the Fabrizia is mostly sweet now, with a hint of lemon and a medium weight mouthfeel. The Rometti's character is now all about the heat of the alcohol and it has a heavy, syrupy mouthfeel. I've essentially ruined both bottles by waiting this long, but if you tend to lose things in your pantry like I do, Fabrizia is the better choice in limoncello.​

Holiday Gift Guide for Limoncello Lovers


There are a few tools I wish I had bought sooner in my Limoncello-making career that would have made life easier. There are also some items that I think enhance the experience or are just plain cool. I thought I'd round those up into a holiday gift guide for all you fellow lovers of limoncello out there. This is great if you want to give someone the gift of homemade limoncello. And hey, if you want to get yourself some sweet gifts, go deserve it.

Citrus Juicer

When you make limoncello, you have a lot of lemons left over. It's wasteful to throw them out so I like to juice them, freeze or refrigerate the juice, and compost the rest of the waste.

Do NOT make the mistake of getting a lemon squeezer. Those are fine for cooking because you'll only squeeze one lemon at a time in all likelihood. My wife has lemon squeezers and I recently tried to use one to dispose of my lemons. This was the result:

Broken lemon juicer

Even if you had the hand strength to use this on 17 consecutive lemons, the squeezer isn't up to the task. You need something that removes most of the leverage required to break a lemons back. You need a proper citrus juicer. Here is the one that I'd recommend. It's even brawnier than the first one I bought. 

Limoncello Serving Set

Presentation is a big part of enjoyment. Having a serving set shows that you are a serious limoncello connoisseur, or at least you're willing to pony up to act the part! This particular set has that home-brewed vibe to it which, as you know, I like.

Limoncello Serving Set with Decanter

For those who want to kick it up a notch, how about a serving set with a decanter? Sure, it's expensive, but it's hand-crafted in Italy! A tiny fraction of the price of a Ferrari, which is also hand-crafted in Italy. A bargain if you think about it (but not too hard). 

Limoncello Almonds

These are so good that I can't have them in the house. In other words, they make a perfect gift. Do with that information what you will...

Microplane Zester

As far as I'm concerned, this is the mother of all limoncello tools. It made making lots of batches of limoncello far, far easier and it exposes a lot of the surface area of the zest to the liquor. The Microplane zester also has many uses beyond making limoncello, so it's a super functional addition to your kitchen. 

The Lemon Cookbook

Ever wonder what to do with all those lemons you just zested? Wonder no more. An entire book has been written to answer that very question. Delicious, nutritious and even claimed to aid in weight loss, lemons have many uses. It almost excuses the fact that you can make a delicious liqueur from the exterior...

Secrets of Lemon Rediscovered

Along the same lines, here's another book that covers recipes but goes well beyond -- covering how to use lemons for skin care, hair care, cleaning, etc. You won't be able to make enough limoncello to satisfy your need for lemons if you go all out here.

Laboratory Beaker Wine Glass

No one should wonder why this appeals to me...for those who appreciate precision in their drinking it doesn't get any better than this.

Blackboard Beverage Dispenser

I'm pretty sure I've been too naughty to get this for Christmas, but it's high on my list. Beverage dispensers with blackboards on them. Mine would say "Limoncello" and "Arancello" of course, and they'd guarantee a boozy New Year's party. 

Podcast Interview on SuperBrewers!

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My friend Jake over at just interviewed me for his podcast and it was a lot of fun! It was also my first time ever being interviewed on a podcast so it was a whole new adventure.

Jake is a very serious home brewer as you'll see from his site and he has tons of helpful tips if you're interested in trying your hand at brewing some beer. Plus, he's from Wisconsin which lends a guy extra credibility on the beer brewing front. :)​

Click to Listen to the Full Interview

Organic vs. Conventional Lemons: The Sequel


Picture of organic lemon and conventional lemon

We moved to a new house about 2 years ago and just today I was digging through a closet and made quite a find…a full case of Everclear! Score!

Case of 151 Proof Grain Alcohol

I know well what to do with this so I decided that first I’ll revisit the organic vs. non-organic results. My first replication study, as it were.

I had a couple reasons for this, one of which is the price of lemons. Lemons have gotten increasingly expensive, especially the organic variety. I bought both types and the conventional ones were 3 for a dollar but the organic ones were about $1 each. Sounds crazy at first, but there is actually a big difference in the lemons. Check the pics below.

Pile of organic lemons next to a pile of conventional lemons.

Picture of organic lemon and conventional lemon

Normally organic produce is smaller and uglier than conventional produce but not so in this case. The big, beautiful lemons are the organics. The puny looking ones are the conventionals.

There was still a color difference as you can see below…but mostly I was intending to equalize the quantity of zest, a step I didn’t take the last time I conducted this experiment.

Conventional lemon zest vs. organic lemon zest in clear glasses.

So I zeroed out the glass and weighed the zest. I had 8 organic lemons and 9 conventional lemons to account for the difference in size of the fruit.

Glass of lemon zest on a food scale.

As I started to even out the two glasses it looked like there was a LOT more organic zest according to the scale. But when I actually started moving the zest around I realized the two quantities were actually very close.

Glass of organic lemon zest on a digital food scale.

Drinking glass weighed on a food scale.

Then I figured out that while they look identical at first glance, my two drinking glasses have very different thicknesses in the base and there was a huge weight difference between them. I should have thought of this out of the gate, but it’s easy to overlook!

Comparison of the thickness of two drinking glasses.