Far Eastern cuisine coming to Hellabrunn Zoo

Venture on a culinary journey to the Far East in the heart of Hellabrunn Zoo. This July, a new Japanese tea house will be opened in the Asia continent of the zoo, a lunch experience with views of the Asian elephants.

Copyright: Tierpark Hellabrunn

Copyright: Tierpark Hellabrunn

The new Japanese tea house, complete with East Asian flair, is currently being built on the site of the former kiosk near the Monkey World, which lies between the Monkey World, the elephant outdoor enclosure and the Tortoise Pavilion.

On 14 April, approximately 30 craftsmen from all the construction companies involved gathered together for a small topping out ceremony. This traditional builders' rite is held to celebrate the placing of the last beam atop a new building, signifying the timber frame of the roof of the Japanese tea house is now complete. The three outdoor pavilions planned are also in place. As is traditional, the head carpenter gave a topping out speech from the roof of the newly erected tea house.

A special highlight of the new “chaseki” or Japanese place for tea is the viewing terrace on the flat roof of the building. From here visitors can enjoy magnificent views of the elephant and lion enclosures. There is also a cosy pavilion in front of the Tortoise outdoor enclosure that invites small groups of visitors to rest on benches shielded from the sun.

For the construction, the zoo mainly used natural building materials, especially wood and bamboo. The Japanese tea house has a seating capacity of 250 (open-air seats) and will be operated by the company Able Gastronomie (Able Catering), which also runs the new Marstall tent at the Oktoberfest and Seebiergarten Lerchenau (beer garden on Lerchenau Lake). Able Gastronomie already runs two popular cafés at Hellabrunn Zoo: Café Rhino and the kiosk at Polar World. The Far Eastern menu will include delicious wok dishes.