Man O' War Vineyards, Waiheke Island
Man O’ War station is the amalgamation of five farms on the eastern end of Waiheke Island, the second largest of the islands in New Zealand’s Hauraki Gulf, and covers around 4,500 acres or roughly a fifth of the total island. It has been in family hands for over thirty years and although it is primarily run as a sheep and cattle station, the family have always been looking to protect and conserve the dramatic array of coastal hillsides, high cliffs and pristine beaches; indeed great areas have been fenced off and planted with over a hundred thousand native trees and plants.
As part of this gentle stewardship of Man O’ War station some vines were planted in the 90’s. However, it has only really been since 2001, and the arrival back from America of the new generation, that the project really took off. Having worked in Los Angeles and become a shareholder in a small Napa property, the owner became convinced that the steeper hillsides on the property with their iron rich clay soil offered huge opportunities for Syrah and Bordeaux varietals.
There are now around ninety vineyard plots planted with a mix of varietals spread across the station, using the steepest slopes and precarious cliff top locations; each varietal is suited and matched to the topography, with whites on the higher cooler sites and the reds on the best drained lower slopes.
Since 2008 the winemaking has been further bolstered with the addition to the team of Duncan McTavish, ex Pegasus Bay in the Waipara, and a veteran of numerous northern hemisphere harvests. His clear vision and expertise in the winery has led to each plot being vinified separately and tracked through to the final blends.
Stocks have now arrived of their two ranges; the white label range offering classic varietal character and vibrant fruit, while the flagship black label wines are reflections of the greatness that Waiheke Island has to offer and will both impress now and reward further cellaring.
Man O' War Vineyards Vintage 2010
A photo tour through the 2010 vintage on Waiheke and Ponui
Wines available through New Generation Wines:
- Man O’ War Syrah
- Man O’ War Merlot/Cabernet Franc
- Man O’ War Dreadnought Syrah
- Man O' War Ironclad Bordeaux Blend
- Man O’ War Sauvignon Blanc
- Man O’ War Gravestone Sauvignon Semillon
- Man O’ War Pinot Gris
- Man O’ War Exhiled Pinot Gris
- Man O’ War Valhalla Chardonnay
- Man O’ War Merlot Rosé