I am a journalist, writer and author. This blog is about wine, words and more...

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About Joelle...

If you have found this online magazine and want to know more, here is a little bit of detail about my writing, wine and life.

I am a journalist, author and wine writer and live in Martinborough, a remote rural wine village in the Wairarapa, 90 minutes’ hilly drive from Wellington city. I trained to be a journalist on an old fashioned typewriter at Wellington Polytechnic in 1989.

I have since written about design, gardens, nudist camps, sperm donors and a raft of other weird and wonderful topics for a vast number of news stand magazines as well as written for most of New Zealand’s large daily newspapers.

I am the published author of 15 books about wine and hold the Wine & Spirit Education Trust’s highest qualification, the Level 4 Diploma.

When not writing, tasting wine for work or enjoying it for pleasure, I love music, cooking for friends, travelling and walking in the hills.

My turangawaewae is the South Island of New Zealand.

Like all published authors, I am working on the next book…

Enough about me. If you’d like to get in touch...

Women in wine profile - MJ from Craggy Range

May 20, 2022
She loves champagne, Riesling and her family and she loathes cork taint. Mary-Jeanne Hutchinson is the woman behind the stories of Craggy Range Wines, a Hawke's Bay winery with more vineyard land in Martinborough's majestic Te Muna Valley. She works as an ambassador for Craggy Range wines and the br...
read more

15

The number of books I have published

1994

The year I wrote my first wine column!

10

The number of Annual Wine Guides I have written

My Bio

I trained in journalism on an old fashioned typwriter at Wellington Polytechnic in 1989.

  • I currently work as a wine writer and update this website every Friday.
  • I work as a wine advisor at Regional Wines & Spirits; writing and tasting wines from around the world on an (almost) daily basis.
  • I am on the judging panel at the 2019 Marlborough Wine Show.
  • I have judged at wine shows regularly since 1995; mostly in New Zealand and also in Australia and South Africa.
  • I hold the Wine & Spirit Education Trust’s highest qualification, the Level 4 Diploma.



  • I write for Good magazine, NZ Winegrower, Drinksbiz, Capital magazine and www.joellethomson.com
  • I wrote my first wine column in 1994 and am the author of 16 wine books (published by New Holland and HarperCollins), including 10 annual wine guides.
  • I regularly host wine tastings for private and corporate groups.
  • My teaching spans many years at the New Zealand School of Food & Wine in Auckland where I taught certificate wine courses (both New Zealand and the WSET – Wine & Spirit Education Trust).

I remember the first moment I fell in love with wine on a dark and stormy night, literally, when I was bitten by the big buttery Chardonnay bug at a cafe in Wellington, New Zealand, in the late 1980s.