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Master Cicerone Overview

The Master Cicerone exam challenges individuals to master every technical and aesthetic aspect of beer. Candidates must converse with professional brewers and chefs as a peer, demonstrate the tasting ability of a seasoned QC panel member and yet also speak with consumers using easy-to-understand but vividly descriptive language. Those who possess these skills serve the industry as consultants, educators and knowledge leaders in various organizations.

Prerequisites: Starting in Fall 2016, preference will be given to Advanced Cicerones in accepting candidates for the Master Cicerone exam, but depending on demand from Advanced Cicerones, some Certified Cicerones may still have an opportunity to sit the exam through 2017. Beginning in 2018, all candidates for the Master Cicerone exam must have passed the Advanced Cicerone™ exam. Candidates for this level of certification must be of legal drinking age.

Exam Details: Master Cicerone exams are given one or two times each year in Chicago. Exam spots are awarded by lottery. More than a dozen industry experts participate in conducting and grading each exam. 

Exam Cost: Initial test: $895

Starting in 2017: Exam Cost - Initial test: $995; Retakes $796

 

Postponement/Rescheduling (effective 11/11/13)

If you postpone your exam registration to a later date, you will be charged a rescheduling fee (50% of your registration).  For any postponement or rescheduling please contact Virginia at Cicerone dot org.

Master Cicerone Syllabus

The Master Cicerone Syllabus presents an outline of the knowledge tested in the exam. Review it to guide your studies and assess your readiness for the exam.

Knowledge Area Responsibilities

Candidates for Master Cicerone certification must demonstrate encyclopedic knowledge and an in-depth understanding of all issues related to brewing, beer and beer service.

The full Master Cicerone Syllabus is your guide to preparation. All of the resources recommended for the Certified Cicerone® and Advanced Cicerone™ exams should be considered in your preparation for the Master exam.

 

Expectations for Master Cicerone candidates:
  • In-depth theoretical and hands-on knowledge of draft systems is required, with a special emphasis on troubleshooting and draft system design.
  • Mastery of beer styles is expected with detailed knowledge of the current BJCP guidelines and familiarity with other style systems as well.
  • Tasting experience with a wide range of beers and styles is a must. Candidates should be familiar with a catalog of commercial examples for each style and have the ability to describe their flavors. Travel to classic beer producing areas in Europe can be highly beneficial.
  • Assessment of off-flavor recognition using AROXA™ flavor standards should be undertaken so that you have mastered recognition of all the off-flavors mentioned in the syllabus. You should also be able to describe unfamiliar off-flavors using specific and descriptive language.
  • Candidates must demonstrate detailed knowledge of the brewing process and its many variations with an emphasis on the sources of flavors in beer and a clear knowledge of how changes in the brewing process might change the flavor of the finished beer. Brewing beer alone or with partners can help to ensure thorough knowledge of the brewing process.
  • Candidates will be asked to complete a number of pairing and chef-collaboration exercises relating beer with food. Experience preparing and presenting beer and food pairing events in collaboration with chefs and/or brewers is strongly recommended.
  • Throughout the exam, candidates will be expected to describe beer (and food) flavors using vivid and specific terms that accurately cover the full spectrum of flavor while remaining within the reach of consumer understanding.

Exam Schedule & Details

Master Cicerone exams are given one or two times each year in Chicago. Exam spots are awarded by lottery. More than a dozen industry experts participate in conducting and grading each exam.

Other Certification Levels

Level 3
A designation of distinctive expertise and tasting skill.