I think the real lesson from this is that Meyer lemons don't make a very lemony cello, and it's probably better not to use them unless one wishes to add some other flavor, like bay leaf.
When I was at my parent's house in Florida over Christmas, the Meyer lemon tree was loaded, and we were trying to come up with ideas, so I started some limoncello. Mine is in the "mellowing" stage right now, but I've tasted it and it both smells and tastes strongly like sweet, drunken, Meyer lemons. I'm wondering what we did differently.
I went out to the tree, picked the lemons, washed them, and zested them with a vegetable peeler. I was worried a microplane would send the oils all over the place and not into my jar. The lemons were smallish for Meyers, somewhere between the size of a Valencia and a Navel orange. I used twelve lemons and one lime to 750 ml of 100 proof vodka. After I put it in the jar, I read to the end of the thread and saw that yours had not turned out like you wanted. I got worried that I had wasted time/lemons/hooch, so I left the peel in the alcohol for six weeks. Like yours, the peel never turned white, just sort of tan/grayish. The liquid was that same "urine" color. Last week I filtered it, added 350 ml of 1:1 simple syrup and 500 ml of 100 proof vodka. When I tasted it and the lemon flavor was still really strong, I added to make a total of 500 ml of syrup and 750 ml of vodka - so, basically the original recipe posted by Katie (many thanks to Katie for that). After a week of sitting with the sugar, it's really lemony with that distinct Meyer complexity, very sweet, but still with a bit of alcohol harshness. Granted, I didn't taste it cold, just out of the jar on the counter.
So I'm curious what the difference might be. I thought it could be a freshness factor, but you said your lemons were really fragrant. Could it be steeping time? Quantity of peel maybe? I have a picture of it steeping that shows how much peel I used, I've never done the photo thing, but I'll give it a shot. -L
Edited to add image.
Edited by lperry, 31 January 2007 - 10:52 AM.