The Man O’ War story begins with a special piece of land which has a rich history. Located at the eastern end of Waiheke Island, Man O’ War is a stunning array of coastal hillsides with high cliffs and pristine beaches forming a ruggedly beautiful coastline. It was along this coastline that Captain James Cook came to anchor during his first voyage around the islands of New Zealand in 1769. Upon sighting the ancient stands of magnificent kauri trees ashore, Cook noted in his journals that they would make ideal masts for the Man O' War battleships of the Royal Navy. Thus, the name Man O’ War was bestowed upon this unique land.
With a desire to protect this treasured land’s natural beauty and sense of history for future generations, the owners purchased the four contiguous farms that now form the 4,500 acres of Man O’ War in the early 1980s.
2016 was an good vintage with the Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon (5% of the blend) all coming in mid March in great condition. All the grapes were whole bunch pressed however each of the Sauvignon blanc vineyards harvest were split into two batches, one for traditional stainless steel fermentation and the other for cloudy juice ferments with wild yeasts. The Sémillon was racked clean into old barrels for fermentation. After fermentation the barrels were kept on their lees for six months prior to blending and bottling.
The 2016 Sauvignon Blanc is a stylish vintage with typical in its herbaceous aromas, tight acidity and ample texture. Typical of Waiheke Sauvignon Blanc, this 2016 is perfect with a year or two of age allowing the wine to mellow and showcase the wines structure and longevity. The wine is conveying the volcanic influence in the soil through its minerality and elevated acidity which is well balanced with texture from the barrel influence and ripe fruit tannins extracted from the skins in the cloudy ferments.