Author of  Beer Nation – the Art and Heart of Kiwi Beer, the award-winning exploration of New Zealand’s beer and brewing history, and The Big Book of Home Brewing – a Kiwi Guide, chief judge for the New World Beer & Cider Awards, beer expert Michael Donaldson is on tap for all your needs, from writing and reviewing, to education, event-hosting and media relations.


Need to update your restaurant or beer list? Need to know what's trending or seasonal? Need advice for matching food with beer? I have the answers to all your beer questions.



Don't know your IPAs from your IBUs or your pilsners from your porters? Book a craft beer lesson with your friends or family and learn about the beer basics. Everything from understanding beer styles to brewing your own at home.



Looking for beer content for your website or magazine. Need help with a press release or content on your Facebook page? I'm a journalist and editor with 25 years experience who can help you get the message right.



How about a beer tasting night for your next corporate function, fund-raiser or special occasion? I'm experienced in beer and food matching, tasting sessions and have hosted seminars from Beervana to the Tauranga Arts Festival!


Latest Articles

Beervana nears nirvana graphic


Beervana nears nirvana

Monday, August 15th, 2016

Beervana 2016 is my favourite iteration of the annual festival. Festival director Beth Brash and her team did an amazing job on the oft-forgotten “less is more” cliché by streamlining the event. By that I mean cutting out seminars, workshops and distractions such as the Media Brew contest. I loved the Media Brew as a […]

Pucker up people, it’s the hour of sour graphic


Pucker up people, it’s the hour of sour

Friday, August 5th, 2016

If you’re setting your watch by the old expression “beer o’clock” then the hour is about to strike sour. Sour – a catch-all term which doesn’t quite capture the array of tart, salty, fruity and refreshing beers starting to mushroom up in New Zealand – is such a pejorative term I sometimes wish we could […]

Big John Harrington: I’ve got the best job in the world graphic


Big John Harrington: I’ve got the best job in the world

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

Big John Harrington reckons he’s got the best job in the world. “I call myself the chief taste tester,” says the patriarch of Christchurch’s Harrington’s Brewery, which this month celebrates its 25th birthday. John, who’s pushing 75, founded the brewery after he tried retirement at 46 and got bored. Born in Greymouth, with six brothers […]

Slow train to success graphic


Slow train to success

Tuesday, July 5th, 2016

When Richard Emerson sold his small Dunedin brewery to national giant Lion four years ago it took him well out of his comfort zone. He went from a humble brewer turning out some of New Zealand’s loved beers to a corporate-style ambassador for his brand, meeting and greeting a constant stream of new faces – […]