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Pasta al Limone with Black Lemon








Welcome to JUST8! That’s right— we’re excited to announce the launch of our monthly recipe newsletter.

It’s been a whirlwind couple of weeks! You might have caught our feature in USA TODAY, where we were honored as one of the top 47 restaurants in the USA—still buzzing with excitement about that. And just after that, our team participated in The Bourbon Classic competition, where we proudly clinched the judges’ award for the best small plate! But trust us, we’re just getting warmed up… There’s a whole lot more in store for 2024.

There’s a lot that goes into the food we create, and we’re excited to give our subscribers a behind-the-scenes look at our process. Join us as we do what we love most—cooking delicious food…

PASTA al LIMONE with Black Lemon

Can you feel the whisper of spring? I don’t know if it’s my vitamin D reserves filling backup or perhaps the few extra minutes of sunlight each day, but I think, dare I say, know brighter days are around the corner. It’s for this reason we wanted to share the perfect winter-going-into-spring recipe: Pasta al Limone. The cold days still have us craving carbs, but not the kind that weigh us down— we want the carbs that help us start planning our summer travels. This dish is quite simple, making it all the more imperative that each step be executed correctly. Equally crucial is the quality of ingredients utilized!

If you are a recurring patron of our restaurant, you know our affinity for the use of black lemon powder. We started making this powder as a way to preserve the citrus in our greenhouse. (The process involves dehydrating the citrus under very low heat for several weeks until the sugars in the fruit caramelize and turn the peel and flesh a dark brown color—hence the term “black lemon”.) Now we make it because there is LITERALLY no other spice that gives the brightness, depth, and complexity as this flavor-packed ingredient. Using black lemon is a quick and easy way to add nuance to this Italian classic while still keeping all the essentials at play (aka not upsetting Nonna).

Okay, okay, enough jabber. Let’s get cooking.

Oh! One last thing— If you want some great recommendations for pairing wines, please read to the very end where our Beverage Director, Randi Densford, gives her top three picks for wines that go with this pasta powerhouse. Cin cin!


  • 16 oz (454g) dried pasta (we recommend Rao’s Homemade)
  • Zest and juice of 2 lemons
  • 4-6 oz (113-170g) butter, diced into cubes (we prefer Kerrygold!)
  • 1-1 ½ cups (240g-360g) reserved pasta water
  • One or two large pinches of Barn8 Black Lemon Pepper (available for purchase here: [LINK]), for garnish
  • Fresh basil, for garnish
  • ¼ cup (or as much as your heart desires) (22.5g) coarsely grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish


1. Cook pasta in a big old pot of salted water until the pasta is perfectly al dente; set aside 1 and a half cups of the pasta water, then drain the pasta. Set both aside for now.

2. Now we’re ready to get saucy. Pour 1 cup of the reserved pasta water into a pan and bring to a boil. Adjust the heat to medium-high as the water reduces. Add half of the butter a few cubes at a time, stirring constantly until a tight sauce begins to form. This process should take about 4ish minutes or so.

3. Add al dente pasta to the newly formed sauce. Continue cooking, making sure to add pasta water and butter AS NEEDED to keep the sauce tight. Cook, tossing the pasta continually to make sure everything is cooking evenly. Use tongs if you have them. This process is a little intuitive, but you are looking for a thick and glossy sauce.

4. Test! As we reach the end of cooking, give it a try! Make any last-minute tweaks. Does it need more cooking time? Does it need a pinch of salt? Now’s the time to make those calls.

5. Once pasta is cooked to your liking, remove from heat. Season with lemon               juice and salt to taste. Divide among your bowls & garnish with grated Parmesan, Barn8 Black Lemon Pepper, lemon zest, and basil. It may sound silly, but garnish in this order for the prettiest composition. You eat with your eyes after all.

And there you have it! Simple to make, yet incredibly delicious. Have any thoughts, questions, or concerns? Just shoot us an email at JUST8@hermitagefarm.com. And don’t forget to tag us (@Barn8Restaurant) in your creations—we’d love to see your finished product! 😉