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Certified Cheese Pro at Napa Rose in the Disneyland Resort

posted on October 11th, 2012 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer

Michael Cox from Napa Rose at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa at Disneyland Resort

Like a sommelier who’s a wine expert, or a cicerone who knows all about beer, there’s a certification for cheese professionals – and Michael Cox from Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa is part of an elite group of 121 who recently passed the inaugural American Cheese Society Certified Cheese Professional exam.

Cheese pros from the U.S. and Canada sat for the first exam, created by the American Cheese Society to encourage high standards of comprehensive cheese knowledge and service for professionals. More than 100 experts spent eight years crafting the rigorous exam based on knowledge and skills needed to be a true expert.

Variety of Cheeses Available from Napa Rose at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa at Disneyland Resort

Far beyond cheese tastings, Cox has to learn about raw ingredients, cheese making, nutrition, how to handle and store cheese, how to select a distributor, how to market and communicate about cheese, and regulations and sanitation.

Cox will receive an official pin, embroidered patch, certificate and the right to be called a Certified Cheese Professional. And he can’t rest on his laurels – he’ll be required to recertify every three years.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Disneyland Resort, Hotels & Resorts



Kyna from CA on October 11th, 2012 at 1:31 pm

Love love love the “Diligently selected cheese plate”. Nom nom nom.

Michael is great by the way! Once upon a time he used to be our server when we would enjoy a drink next to the fire pit. Congrats!!


Ricky from FL on October 11th, 2012 at 1:31 pm

If there ever were a Disney job to be jealous of, this is it. But why does his name tag say Saucy?


Lindsay on October 11th, 2012 at 1:31 pm

Mickey Mouse will be so proud! Don’t know if you’ve heard – but Mickey loves cheese. ;)


Ashley on October 11th, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Saucy (pictured above) is FANTASTIC. We dined at the Chef’s counter for my mom’s 55th birthday, back in December 2011, his service rates as the best any of us have ever had. I cant wait to dine at Napa Rose again, and see Saucy’s smiling face, and experience his knowledge and expertise. Congratulations on passing this test, and we look forward to sampling some of the delicious cheeses that Napa Rose has to offer


Daniel on October 11th, 2012 at 1:52 pm

What’s the story behind Michael’s unique nametag?


Jessica on October 11th, 2012 at 2:12 pm

Oh my gosh! It’s Saucy! My boyfriend and I dined at the Chef’s counter at Napa Rose as well this past July for my birthday and Saucy was amazing! It’s awesome that he was a cicerone because my boyfriend LOVES beer! Congrats on passing this test and we are definitely going to request Saucy the next time we dine at Napa Rose.


william on October 11th, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Go Saucy!!! We the privilege of being taken care of by Saucy during our recent encounter at Chef’s Table in Napa Rose. My girlfriend had the wine pairing while I had a beer pairing, and let me tell you he chose the best beers with every single serving of food. I recently saw him again at Napa Rose and he recommended a fine quality beer, le find du monde. CONGRATS ON BEING FEATURED SAUCY!


Colleen from TX on October 11th, 2012 at 2:23 pm

I love CHEESE!!! How fun to be known as a Cheese Professional. I’ll leave the professionalism up to Cox and I will have to drop by and be educated.


Louise on October 11th, 2012 at 2:32 pm

No I am really sad… :( My other and I went to dinner there for the Chef’s Table at the end of August and we never had a cheese plate… Is this normally offered?


Teri on October 11th, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Congratulations, Saucy! This is a well-deserved feather in your cap!


Jessica on October 11th, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Go Saucy, Go!!!!! He is literally the BEST server I have ever had. Such an amazing personaity, friendly, professional, and all around wonderful! My family and I call him “Lumiere” because he is the epitome of guest service and hospitality. We can’t wait to dine at the Napa Rose again to congratulate him! :D


Christopher from Warwickshire on October 11th, 2012 at 3:52 pm

Was served by Saucy when I visited a few years ago, he was amazing! I even got the cheese platter and it was clear he knew his stuff!


Caroline on October 12th, 2012 at 12:42 pm

I thought cheese experts were called fromagiers? Or is that something else?


Jennie from CA on November 4th, 2012 at 1:16 am

Cheese should honestly be its own food group. I love that we have our own certified expert at Napa. We are doing CC at NR the day after Christmas. I wonder if Saucy will be there. Congrats Saucy.