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The Art of Preparing and Drinking Yerba Mate

Learn about the the art of preparing and drinking Yerba Mate. Discover the Gourd and the Bombilla and the different rituals around drinking Yerba Mate.
The Art of Preparing and Drinking Yerba Mate
Written by: Anna Jamison 22 November 2023

The Tradition of Preparing and Drinking Yerba Mate 

Yerba Mate is a traditional drink made from the dried leaves of an evergreen holly, llex paraguariensis. It contains many benefits such as providing sustained energy and is packed full of antioxidants. While yerba mate is becoming more and more popular, the traditional method of drinking it is not as easy as a regular cup of tea. 

How to Prepare and Enjoy the Perfect Brew

Yerba mate, like any true tea, can be scolded by hot water so when adding yerba mate leaves to your mug, it is important to add cold water too and allow the leaves to soak it up. 

Once the water has mostly disappeared, fill the rest of the mug with hot water, boiled to around 80 degrees celsius. 

The tradition of brewing yerba mate is done to ensure that enjoyment of the drink can be done socially. Once brewed, yerba mate can be passed around the group and topped up with water. 

Alternatively, Mission has recognised all the benefits of yerba mate and have worked to make consumption of yerba mate as easy and enjoyable as possible. Mission have created blends of hot and cold brew tea including yerba mate within plastic free tea bags, therefore removing the hard brewing steps that comes with loose yerba mate leaves. 

Yerba Mate Drink

Tools of the Yerba Mate Tradition

The traditional brewing of yerba mate requires a few tools that not every kitchen has. For example, in yerba mate tradition, the mug in which we drink from is called a ‘mate’ and in South American tradition, it is a dried piece of gourd, a piece of fruit from the Cucurbitaceae family. 

Also, while yerba mate is designed to be sipped, it is usually through a bombilla. A bombilla is a straw that keeps the loose yerba mate leaves in the brew and allows you to drink the tea without any soggy leaves getting through. 

As yerba mate is becoming more and more popular round the world the traditional tools of yerba mate are being altered slightly with glass and ceramics being used and by using Mission you won’t even need a bombilla as there will be no floating tea leaves.

The Different Yerba Mate Blends

Some have said that yerba mate can taste quite bitter especially when brewed too long. However, here at Mission we have taken all the benefits of yerba mate and blended it with specific ingredients to create tasty hot and cold brew drinks without the hassle of traditional brewing. 

Yerba mate is included within 3 of our blends, Perform, Focus and Rise, all created for different effects. 

Perform. Perform is a yerba mate blend with spearmint and lemongrass, designed to enhance both your mental and physical performance. It can be blended hot or cold and is perfect for before and during your workouts! 

Focus is our yerba mate blend with a little less caffeine. It is blended with peppermint and chilli for the perfect afternoon pick me up and to give you that laser focus. It was created to improve mental clarity and productivity without any nasty caffeine crash! 

Lastly, and our newest blend, Rise. Rise is Mission’s take on english breakfast tea. The highest quality Indian Assam Black tea is blended with yerba mate and a range of nootropics to give you a sustainable boost, support alertness and blood flow to the brain and avoid the crash. 

Try our yerba mate blends here.

Yerba Mate Infusions for Wellness

Yerba mate is full of wellness benefits. Yerba mate has stimulating properties which helps widen our blood vessels, therefore increasing blood flow and giving us the boost of energy we need. 

Further, it is also packed full of polyphenols which are antioxidants and anti-inflammatory. This means yerba mate can help boost our immune system as well as reduce inflammation in the body. While many think inflammation is mostly in muscles after a hard run or workout, inflammation is also part of our immune response system. Inflammation plays a vital role in healing so if we are constantly inflamed, healing takes longer, making us more susceptible to other diseases! 

Yerba Mate Ceremonies Around the World

Yerba mate is most commonly drunk in South American countries such as Paraguay, Argentina, Uruguay, as well as parts of Syria and Lebanon. 

As yerba mate is so well linked to South America so it may come as a shock that it has been linked to Syria and Lebanon. The first import of Argentinean yerba mate dates back to 1936. Nowadays, there are 22,563 tons delivered to Syria and 800 tons into Lebanon every year.

There are a two key differences between how South America prepares yerba mate and how Syria and Lebanon prepare it:

  1. Syrians and the Lebanese prepare yerba mate by adding it to hot water and stirring it. 
  2. Secondly, in Syria and Lebanon, yerba mate is often served with a slice of lemon. This is used to sanitise the bombilla after it is used by the previous drinker. 

The traditional drinking of yerba mate is by making a brew and passing it around the group. In South America, the bombilla is not cleaned in between but in Syria and Lebanon, it is. 

Finding Your Perfect Yerba Mate Strength and Flavour

Here at Mission, we understand that not everyone is going to enjoy every single flavour and taste which is why we strive to have something for everyone! We have created 3 blends with yerba mate with different flavours to ensure there is something fit for everyone's taste. 

Mission have added added extra ingredients to provide the perfect blend for the tea to be enjoyed for multiple cups!

Yerba Mate Drink

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