One of life’s little joys is sipping a glass of limoncello, the sweet and refreshingly tart lemon liqueur that’s a staple of cafés and restaurants throughout Italy. And one of the finest limoncellos we’ve come across is the one you’ll find in this month’s box.
While Don Ciccio & Figli Limoncello certainly sounds Italian, it’s actually made Stateside — in Washington, DC, to be precise. But its roots go back to 19th century Italy, when Vincenzo Amodeo began making amari and liqueurs on the Amalfi Coast. The Amodeo family continued to operate the still off and on for almost a century, until the distillery and the lemon trees used to make the limoncello were destroyed in an earthquake in 1980. The recipes, however, survived, and came with the family to the United States. And in 2012, Don Ciccio & Figli was reborn.
The limoncello, whose recipe dates back to 1947, is Don Ciccio & Figli’s flagship liqueur. It’s made with fresh California lemon peel, alcohol, water, and sugar — no artificial coloring, flavoring, or stabilizers. It’s a beautifully balanced liqueur, with the bright acidity of the fruit offsetting the sugar.
A great limoncello doesn’t need additional ingredients to impress, but it does make an excellent mixer. Try it in a highball with soda or tonic and plenty of ice for a classic warm weather refresher, or top it off with prosecco for a more indulgent sparkling libation. Gin and limoncello on the rocks is a classic combination — top it off with soda for an exquisite Tom Collins variation.
But we suggest trying it on its own, with nothing more than a glass for company, to transport you back to old Italy... and the way great liqueurs used to be made.