John and Heather Forsman have built an enviable lifestyle, for their luxury lodge is situated on a spectacular site overlooking their vineyard with views to Mt Tamahunga and the surounding lush landscape. John, an airline pilot, is passionate about his wines, made by herb Friedli, an independent winemaker. John's philosophy is to grow low-yielding vines, with hand-tending of every step of vineyard production. The Pinot Gris, made in a bone-dry style, has found instant popularity and sells out each vintage.
The red wines - from Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec grapes - were released under the Kawau Bay label when produced from very young vines, but the 2006 vintage is the first to be released under the premium Takatu label.