Waimata cheese

100% family owned and operated, Gisborne-based Waimata Cheese has been handcrafting New Zealand made specialty cheeses for over 27 years. From humble beginnings in 1994 to maintaining their position as the third largest NZ made cheese company for the past 10 years, their award winning products can be found in supermarkets nationwide, from the top of the North to the bottom of the South. Waimata specialises in white mould, haloumi and blue cheese as well as sheep milk and blended milk cheese, which were recently introduced to their range in 2019 and 2020 respectively. The family also operate a sheep dairy farm on the outskirts of Gisborne and deliver the ewe milk fresh to the factory to be made into cheese that same day. Local, East Coast dairy farmers supply Waimata with their cow milk requirements and both milks are packed full of flavour and nutrients thanks to the wonderful weather and grass growth sunny Gisborne enjoys.

To re-energise the brand, the multigenerational company launched their new look late October. The new look has brought in aspects of the old with their familiar pop of colour, using tinted foil over a matte black base which has maori puhoro patterning interwoven beneath. The puhoro pays homage to the Thorpe family’s maori heritage, to the Tairawhiti region from which the company grew, and can be seen throughout Waimata’s entire range.

It would be a tough call to choose just one cheese from the Waimata range to try, but the top picks are the rich and creamy 50/50 Sheep and Cow Milk Blended Brie, the salty, squeaky Cracked Pepper Haloumi and the sweet and nutty sheep milk Manchego. Also hugely popular are the slightly larger 250g Traditional Camembert or Brie, which are the perfect size for a sharing plate.

All Waimata cheeses are suitable for vegetarians, using a vegetable based coagulant rather than an animal rennet and are gluten free. 

Visit waimatacheese.co.nz, email sales@waimatacheese.co.nz or phone 0800 924 6282 for more information.

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