Although peer review plays a central role in the maintenance of high standards in scientific research, training of reviewing skills is not included in the common education programmes. The Emerging EULAR (European League Against Rheumatism) Network (EMEUNET) developed a programme to address this unmet need. The EMEUNET Peer Review Mentoring Program for Rheumatology Journals promotes a systematic training of reviewing skills by engaging mentees in a 'real world' peer review experience supervised by experienced mentors with support from rheumatology journals. This viewpoint provides an overview of this initiative and its outcomes, and discusses its potential limitations. Over 4 years, 18 mentors and 86 mentees have participated. Among the 33 participants who have completed the programme, 13 (39.3%) have become independent reviewers for Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases after the training. This programme has been recently evaluated by a survey and qualitative interviews, revealing a high interest in this initiative. The main strengths (involvement of a top journal and learning opportunities) and weaknesses of the programme (limited number of places and insufficient dissemination) were identified. Overall, this programme represents an innovative and successful approach to peer review training. Continuous evaluation and improvement are key to its functioning. The EMEUNET Peer Review Mentoring Program may be used as a reference for peer review training in areas outside rheumatology.