Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sommeliers and Cicerones and Beer Servers.

My memory is not that great, but tell me if I'm wrong about this: Five years ago in the United States, we would've laughed if someone claimed to be a "beer sommelier." Well, I would have. I can't speak for you.

While working on a magazine article, which is not really that relevant to the question, I asked Ray Daniels today how many folks out there can call themselves "Cicerones." The short answer: 173, including just one Master Cicerone. (The only Master for the moment, if you're interested, is Andrew Van Til of the Michigan-based drinks distributor CKL.)

Meanwhile there are nearly 2,500 others approved by the Cicerone program as "Certified Beer Servers." And these days, I think, nobody is really laughing at any of them.


  1. You sure? Nothing against the program or the earnestness of those who have studied but if anyone introduced themselves to me under those titles, I am afraid I would laugh. If they mention in passing that they took the course, I wouldn't.

  2. I guess I'd be more inclined to ask where they ply their trade and plan a visit.

  3. I am currently plying my CBS skills in my home. Even the dog dish is "Beer Clean"