Latest news

unnamed-1To help get in the Christmas spirit and say thanks to our wonderful team for their efforts in 2016 we recently held our annual staff Christmas function.
In conjunction we announced our 2016 Employee of the Year. However, this year we were so impressed that we couldn’t narrow it down to just one person, and instead awarded it to both Germán Tirado and Richard Thurtell.
Big congratulations to both Germán and Richard who have shown great initiative, a positive and motivating attitude, and dedication to their roles throughout the year.

There is a spring in our step at the Zealong Tea Estate following our annual spring harvest – the first in the world.
For 20 days in November, our specially trained staff could be found out in New Zealand’s only commercial tea estate picking the best leaves for harvest.
This is the first of three annual harvests – the next are in January and March – and we are looking forward to the beautiful spring tea that has come from it.

The team at Zealong Tea Estate is delighted to have picked up the Community Contribution award at the 2016 Westpac Waikato Business Excellence Awards!

We are proud to make a contribution to our wider community, both in terms of environmental effects and providing valuable experience and employment to the people of the Waikato region which we call home.

It was a fabulous night celebrating the amazing business opportunities in the Waikato and the people who drive our local economy forward.

Westpac Waikato Business Awards, Claudelands, Hamilton, Friday 4 November 2016. Photo: Stephen Barker / Barker Photography. ©Barker Photography

See the rest of the 2016 WWBEA winners here.

We were thrilled to welcome Prime Minister John Key to officially open our new functions centre and production facility, the Vista, at our tea estate in the Waikato. As featured in the Waikato Times, Prime Minister John Key said Zealong Tea’s export potential is significant and its story is one that has real appeal to a global audience. He  told invited guests to the Vista opening that the world has an appreciation for high quality beverages, especially those with a unique, New Zealand story like the Zealong Tea story.

Zealong Tea founder Vincent Chen shared his vision for growing oolong tea in the Waikato and exporting it to the world. A true story of New Zealand innovation, the Zealong Tea Estate continues to evolve.

Read the story here



Today the Zealong Tea Estate signed a landmark export agreement with TeeGschwendner, the world’s largest speciality tea retailer. The agreement, which will see 10 per cent of Zealong’s annual tea production, or enough tea to brew two million cups of tea, exported to Germany, is testament to Zealong’s commitment to the environment, purity and transparency.

zealong-wintecWe believe in supporting innovation and Kiwi ingenuity, which is why we have brought the classroom to our tea plantation through a partnership with the Waikato Institute of Technology (Wintec).

This move has seen a group of the best and brightest young minds the region has to offer given the opportunity to put theory into practice and design the landscape around our new venue, The Vista.

Set at the entrance to Zealong Tea Estate, the recently completed $6 million Visitor Centre and functions facility (The Vista) will boost our commitment to the development of New Zealand as a country that exports unique, sustainable products to the world.

In the meantime, why not visit us and see the Wintec students’ progress?




Labour MP returns to Waikato roots

zealong-jacinda-vistaWe had the pleasure of recently welcoming Labour MP Jacinda Ardern to the Zealong Tea Estate to witness firsthand the amazing success story that is New Zealand’s only commercial tea plantation.

As a Waikato girl, having grown up in Morrinsville, Jacinda knows the region’s rural heartland, along with pure air, warming sun, clean water and fertile soils, are all key ingredients for producing a product unmatched in quality.

Here at Zealong, our tea is organically-certified, fully-traceable, New Zealand-grown tea that complies with the highest standards in the world. These are attributes Jacinda was highly impressed with while marvelling at the stunning backdrop of the plantation.


Winter warmers on the menu


Looking for a way to warm your belly and soul during these chilly days? Then cast your eye no further than Zealong’s new winter menu, offering a number of flavoursome entrées, mains and desserts.

Our culinary geniuses have spent the past few months in the kitchen creating what we think are some of the finest dishes to be served at our Tea House restaurant. Try the Black Tea-Brined Chicken or Peach Scallop (pan-seared scallop in a coconut cream gel with a peach and roasted pepper salsa) for starters, followed by the mouth-watering Coconut Crab Soup or a fragrant Lamb Rendang.

For those with a sweet tooth, it will be hard to go past the Peach Jelly Cheesecake and our version of a classic winter warmer, the crumble with a generous dollop of plum, rhubarb and apple stewed in a mixture of Chinese five spices, cinnamon stick and honey. Whatever you desire, we are sure there is something for you.

For more information, visit to view the new menu or call 07 853 3018.


Take fine dining to the next level at The Zealong Tea Estate


Every now and then we love to be treated to a culinary adventure, where our tastebuds can explore an array of new flavours. This winter, join us as we take you to a world of pure indulgence with our specialty seven-course winter degustation.

Comprising of select dishes lovingly prepared by our executive chef, this is the highest standard of fine dining. Let us help you take that special occasion or a night out to the next level.

Be in quick as we have limited tables and only two dates left: 22, and 29.

Bookings are essential. Call 07 853 3018 or email for more information.


Zealong goes cheesy in collaboration

zealong-newsletter-kapiti-logoPushing the boundaries to find new and exciting ways to treat the tastebuds is in our DNA – which is why we have teamed up with leading New Zealand cheese maker Kapiti.

Kapiti has paired some of the best artisanal products New Zealand has to offer with their delicious cheeses to produce a limited edition Tasting Board range.

After hours of collaboration and fine tuning, you can now get your hands – and tastebuds – on a Zealong Black tea jelly, accompanied by three cheeses: Cumin Seed Gouda, Aorangi, and Kikorangi.

Trust us when we say this is a match made in heaven. This is a real coup for us as New Zealand’s only commercial tea estate, with our products now recognised by Kapiti for their purity. This follows the inclusion of Zealong tea in Whittaker’s New Zealand Artisan Collection range of chocolates last year.

Other Kapiti collaborations include Havana Coffee, Thomson Whiskey New Zealand and Garage Project craft beer.

See Kapiti’s introduction on their Facebook page: