Three Cheers for Our Cheese Champions!

It’s a challenge that can make even the most seasoned foodie shiver: the Certified Cheese Professional Exam (CCP) for ascendant cheese experts. Bringing together cheesemongers from across the country, this grueling test clocks in at three hours and 150 questions.  Thanks to the CCP, there’s a universal cheese “language,” shared by everyone who’s successfully passed, that helps set an industry-wide standard for excellence.

Taking the CCP is an extraordinary feat, and beating it is something else. That’s why, when we learned that three of our very own cheesemongers had beaten the CCP, we were ecstatic. We can’t claim to be totally surprised, though: if you’ve seen the care and dedication Leslie, Mark, and Joe give to cheese-craft at Di Bruno’s, you’ll know that these three deserve nothing less than the top honor. This year’s trio joins other Di Bruno-ites, Amanda, Jeff, Hunter, Richard and Rocco in the ranks of Certified Cheese Professionals.

These are our 2014 Di Bruno Bros. champs: 


Leslie is an all-around gem, but nobody can step to her when it comes to incredible pairings.


Mark is a Comté mastermind, with tons of travel to France to sharpen his skills. 


Joe, monger at the helm of our 9th Street store, is always ready to educate you on all things cheese.

The Certified Cheese Professional Exam was created for the American Cheese Society by a committee of which our VP of Culinary Pioneering, Emilio, is a member. It was established to accredit mongers as industry experts, as the Sommelier certification does in the wine industry.  The exam has been offered since 2012, and there are currently 406 CCPs in the world. This year, 250 tested and 153 passed.  Di Bruno Bros. currently employs eight CCPs, which is a greater sum than any other independent cheese retailer.

We couldn’t be happier to see our three newly-minted CCPs mongering their hearts out. Congratulations, Leslie, Mark and Joe!