Limoncello Tools - LimoncelloQuest

Limoncello Tools

Gallon Jar1) A one gallon glass jar with a screw-on lid: You can get on at Amazon through that link or Home Goods is a good place to get these locally for a reasonable price. You can get smaller ones for smaller batches but I wouldn’t recommend it unless space is really THAT tight for you. I’d also recommend having 4 of them if you plan to make numerous batches of Limoncello for your friends too.

2) A permanent coffee filter. That link is to the exact one that I use, just a basic plastic model. You can buy these at any grocery store and the ones with the flat bottom are best.

3) A supply of unbleached paper coffee filters, again, the flat bottom ones are best. That link is to the exact ones I use and you go through a lot of them so get a decent supply.

4) Bottles with caps.

5) A Microplane Zester: Let me save you some time here, don’t even bother with any other kind of zester.

Microplane Zester
Many of the mistakes I initially made on my first batches were because of zesting errors. Peelers, power zesters, contraptions that fit in your palm, I’ve tried them all and for the purposes of making Limoncello they all suck. Ignore this warning at your own peril, a microplane zester costs less than $10 and is an indispensable tool for making Limoncello.

6) A Brita Water Filter Pitcher
(or comparable product) and a supply of filters.

7) A ladle. I like one with a steep angle of the handle that allows me to get to the bottom of tall jars and has little pour spouts on the sides.

8) A funnel. I use a plastic one but I now use metal or glass rather than plastic whenever possible, so when I break the plastic one I’ll get a metal one.

Lemon Press9) Not completely necessary, but it’s a waste not to use the rest of the lemon after zesting so I recommend a citrus press to extract the juice from the lemons efficiently. I bought a decent one at Home Goods for about ten bucks. That was lucky on price but as you can see it’s hot pink so I can’t leave it out on the counter, stainless is better that way.

10) Labels or paper and scotch tape to indicate which batch is which. I use this label maker for marking my limoncello batches and all kinds of other stuff. It seems overly anal to buy a label maker but once you get past that you’ll find it all kinds of useful.

11) A vegetable brush or other plastic scrub brush for cleaning the lemons.

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(6) comments

[…] evening. I used Peter’s recipe as a base for this batch. As is recommended by the author of Limoncello Quest, I purchased a Microplane Grater to assist with the lemon zesting portion of the process. That […]


[…] 27, 2008 · No Comments Just wanted to add a note after taking a look at Ben’s page on the topic of […]

Steven November 15, 2018

hi, I have been making limoncello for probably 15 years now. im at the point where I need to make 6 gallons to satisfy demand. I have always struggled with a good way to filter it before bottling. I currently run it through cheese cloth and nylon bags 4-6 times until in flows pretty quickly. I don’t feel like im getting enough particle out as I still get a decent ‘il collarino’.

coffee filters are much much too slow for me.
im thinking that using a micron bag/filter would be better. do you have any experience using these and what micron measure would be good?


Bill December 1, 2020

I was thinking of trying paper paint filters. They come in various mesh sizes: 100, 120, 190 microns, etc.

Kerrie September 7, 2021

Use jelly bags to strain the liqueur. Dive all in and get the metal legs to hold the bag and use an 8 cup pyrex to catch your liquid. Easy pour back into funneled container or into another bag for 2nd strain if you need. Mine comes out great after one run through. Boil the bags for ten minutes in hot water to sterilize before/after use.. dry in the dryer and re-use over and over. Very inexpensive investment. Clarifies and filters much better than cheese cloth and a heck of a lot faster than filters. I have zero patience for straining time sensitive things with all the fruit flies that are so excited over all the canning/preserving projects. So excited for the Lemon~Pear and Plum liqueurs this year!!

Drache Zahn January 8, 2023

Here is a riff for you… I used Meyer lemons from our tree. Used a peeler and started with the larger peel sections of lemon zest (yellow only, no white pith). Soak for 1 to 2 months in 100 proof Vodka. When ready to process, I ran all the peels through a masticating juicer (grind and press) for extra juice/lemon oils. Add this back to liquid. It will be very cloudy for a few days. For the first few days, I shake daily. The oils will float to the top and the solids will settle to the bottom. I agitate the jars to get more separation. I store the liquids in the long neck vodka bottles to get the oils to float to the narrow top of the bottle necks. Later, I use a turkey baster and suck the floating oils off the top. When ready to process, I pour rest through coffee filters. Filter/rebottle and let rest until I like the clarity. I do this once every few days so some solids can settle out and you can avoid pouring it through the filter. Left with a clear golden yellow limoncello base. Add sugar to (3 part sugar 1 part water) syrup to base so not to over dilute proof. Target 50 to 80 proof.

This takes the rich lemon zest/oils flavor to a whole new level.

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