After many years of staunch resistance and many, many requests, Adagio Teas has finally added Yerba Mate - pure, toasted and four blends. Yerba Mate is a member of the holly family and is technically an herbal tea as it is not from the actual tea plant - camellia sinensis. It should be noted that because it is considered herbal, does NOT mean it is caffeine-free. It has about the same amount of caffeine per cup as green tea. It is energizing but not jitter inducing (unless of course, one were to over imbibe, as with any caffeine bearing beverage.)
Yerba Mate has long been a social beverage in South American countries such as Argentina and Brazil. It is customary to enjoy a gourd-full of brewed mate and sip through a metal straw while enjoying the drink and the company of friends and companions.
Yerba Mate can be brewed similarly to tea and tisanes by steeping it loose leaf in a teapot with infuser or gravity tea maker like our IngenuiTEA. The key, we have learned from our Mate specialists, is to brew it at around 150F (66C) for 3-5 minutes. This will quell any tendency toward bitterness and yield a smoother brew.
The toasted version is a bit mellower and fuller bodied and makes a nice base for blending with flavors such as chocolate and hazelnut. We have done such a blend and hope it will please our mate fans. Also, appropriate for the fall and spice lovers we’ve also blended a Mate Spice. Yum!
The un-toasted Yerba Mate is grassier and more herbaceous and seems to make a nice blend with fruity flavors such as mango and citrus. We hope you will check out these new members of our tea team, have a mate tasting with your customers and let us know what you think!