What winemaker Jules Taylor Learned From Her Mum

She may be partial to an end-of-week gin, but Jules Taylor has literally grown up with wine.

Jules was born in the year the first vines were planted in Marlborough and is deeply invested in the region and its grape-growing families.

After completing a degree in Viticulture at Lincoln University in Christchurch, Jules explored other winemaking regions around the globe, namely Italy and Australia, before starting her namesake label as a side-hustle in 2001. Five years, two children, and many late nights later, Jules’ dream became reality. 

“My husband George and I created a business that feeds our family and gives us a flexible lifestyle,” she says. “I’m proud of what our small team have achieved.”

The 2021 Winemaker of The Year says that she’s never been good at goal setting, rather wanting to make wine that’s approachable and speaks of its home ground. She admits that in the beginning it was tough.

“There weren’t many women working in the industry when I started, especially not in the cellar. That has changed immensely in the past three decades, there is now amazing support available for people wanting to embark on a career in wine – courses, cadetships, and mentoring programmes.

Jules’ mum Sezza taught her that hard work pays off. “Not a day has gone by that my mum hasn’t worked, and she’s always the first to turn up with food or to help when life throws anyone a curveball.”

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