Our Story

On the challenging and remote landscape of Waiheke Island in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf you’ll find Man O’ War. A 4,500-acre family farm with over 150-acres under vine.

Man O' War

Farm, vineyard & winery.

We planted our first vines in 1993. Over the next two decades we explored our farm and analysed the kingdom that lies beneath in search of the best single vineyard locations to one day make world-class wine.

Today you’ll find no less than 75 vineyards across the farm, and a few we’ve abandoned along the way. We’ve become well known for our Syrah, Chardonnay and Waiheke’s signature Bordeaux Blends. We also produce a distinctly different Sauvignon Blanc a seriously drinkable Pinot Gris and our (infamous) Rosé. 

The Farm & Bay

4,500-acre family farm and beach

The only thing we respect more than our wine is our diverse agricultural land.  When you visit; as well as vineyards you’ll see our orchards, olive groves, restored native forests and beehives.  All of this along with our livestock is foraged for our cellar door restaurant, a true farm-to-table ethos.

We even encourage the odd sand fly to join our biodiversity at the cellar door and tasting room.  New Zealand’s only beachfront tasting experience where you can taste all our wines while watching the waves wash up on the sandy shore as local boaties drop in for much needed ‘supplies'.

The Name

three hundred years of heritage

Man O’ War is steeped in history dating back to early Polynesian adventurers. The protected cove has provided safe harbour during many rough seas. The bay was named by navigators in the late 1700s.

The magnificent Kauri trees we’re noted in the early shipping journals, they made ideal masts for the naval Man O’ War warships, and thus the name Man O’ War was bestowed upon this special place.

The Crew

Our farm, winery and restaurant proudly employs between 25 and 75 locals and wine obsessed travellers throughout the year to bring to life the Man O’ War experience.

Our viticulture and winemaking team have remained unchanged for over a decade - helmed by winemaker Duncan McTavish.   Before visiting Man O’ War, Duncan had never been to Waiheke Island. When you visit, you’ll understand why he never left.

Applying his experience from vintages in France, Germany, Australia, United States and throughout New Zealand, Duncan’s view is that wine is made for ‘serious enjoyment’, as a result we take our winemaking pretty seriously, ourselves on the other hand…not so much.