Ken Martin, Spencer Roper, Dave Woodruff earn craft beer industry credentials
DURANGO, Colo. – Steamworks Brewers Ken Martin and Spencer Roper, along with Co-assistant General Manager Dave Woodruff have taken the “next step” in the national Cicerone (sis-uh-rohn) Certification Program, achieving “Certified Cicerone” and joining a select group of 330 in the country to earn the title.
A Cicerone is to craft beer what a sommelier is to wine: it designates those with proven expertise in selecting, acquiring and serving a wide range of beers. The Cicerone Certification Program offers independent assessment and certification indicating to industry professionals and consumers the knowledge and skills possessed by the Certified Cicerone.
Steamworks Brewing Co. embraced the program early in 2011with the goal to help ensure that expectations are met when patrons enjoy a craft beer at the brewpub. By July 2011, 45 of the brewpub’s servers and beertenders had earned their “Certified Beer Server” credentials, the first step in the Cicerone Certification Program. Martin, Roper and Woodruff were the first of the group to go on and study for the “Certified Cicerone.” The ultimate certification is “Master Cicerone,” with only three in the country having earned that distinction.
“Many consumers don’t know the difference between a pale ale and a lager, or a stout and a porter – let alone what flavors are found in a Hefferweizen or Kölsch,” said Kris Oyler, Steamworks co-founder. “Education is an important part of the Steamworks culture, so the Cicerone Certification Program has provided us with a structure to help ensure our staff have top-notch skills, which they can then share with our patrons. We congratulate the brewdogs and Dave for their accomplishment.”
A Certified Cicerone has shown comprehensive knowledge of beer storage, sales and service; beer styles and culture; beer tasting and flavors; brewing ingredients and processes; and pairing beer with food through a written exam, and tasting and demonstration components. Martin, Roper and Woodruff are now eligible to earn their Master Cicerone, which, in addition to a written component, will require examination before a panel of industry experts.
“Anyone can call themselves a beer expert,” said Oyler. “But when consumers want just the right beer, they usually need assistance from a server who really knows beer flavors, styles and brands. A Cicerone is qualified to assist.”
The Cicerone Certification Program was launched by the Brewer’s Association in 2008. To learn more about the curriculum and certification, visit www.cicerone.org.
The award-winning Steamworks Brewing Co. is located at 801 E. Second. Ave., Durango (970.259.9200) and open 11 a.m. until closing. For further information, visit www.steamworksbrewing.com.