The recipe below comes from my friend Sergio, the inimitable waiter from La Rivetta, a fabulous restaurant in Venice where the gondolieries eat. Their veal meatballs are sublime, and the limoncello the very best I’ve ever had.
- Peel the rind (no pith; yellow part only) off 5 lemons and 1 orange. Add two bottles of 95 proof pure alcohol. Marinade for a week.
- Boil 1 lb. sugar with twice as much water as the alcohol (4 bottles’ worth) until sugar melts and the mixture is syrupy. Bring to room temperature (this is important).
- Combine the marinade with the syrup. Leave in the freezer. It keeps indefinitely but is difficult not to finish once you get started J