Yerba Mate Reviews

Mate is gourmet


Mate is extremely multifaceted drink, on par with tea, coffee and wine. When I just started drinking mate I was amazed by the fact that the drink made out of the single plant can have so many different aromas, flavors and effects!

Mate can be truly gourmet. The taste is affected by many factors, including the soil where the plant has been growing, climate, exposure to the sun, season of harvesting, cut, drying process, methods and terms of aging. All those factors are contributing to a massive variety of yerba on the market, and that in its turn causes a lot of differences in preferences of yerba mate lovers.

How I review yerba mate


Tastes differ, they say, so I wasn’t planning on giving any “score” in my reviews. I find ratings, stars and thumbs pretty useless  , and I honestly think that there is no “bad” yerba mate — I had nasty coffees, gnarly cigars, disgusting wines, but never have I ever had a mate that tasted so bad that I wanted to throw it away. One mate can be good for rare peaceful evening ceremonies, another mate can be good for daily morning drinking — it doesn’t mean that one mate is good and other is bad.

For instance, Liebig Original was such a delicious mate that I was disappointed that it became lavado so quickly — I just wanted to sip it all day long! But is it necessarily a bad thing? Arguably not — sometimes you don’t have time or desire for long drinking session, and mate with short duration comes in handy.

In my reviews I try to “dig into the core” of specific yerba mate and try to understand what did manufacturer want to say, for whom this yerba mate was designed for. I describe the aroma and taste of mate, its cut and specifics of preparation. I give my opinions and let the reader decide what’s better for him according to his own tastes and preferences.

Matexperience Choice

Some of the yerba mate brands that I tried have really impressed me in one way or another — usually such yerba mate has its own distinctive nature, character, that is unique and stands out from other yerba mate brands.

In that case, I mark those yerba mate brands as a Matexperience Choice, which indicates a mate that is memorable and in my opinion is a must-try for any matero out there. The more such yerba mate brands you have tried, the more you’ll see how different, complex and truly gourmet this drink can be. That is the solid yerba mate that is very unlikely to disappoint you and would make you get some more after you finished your first bag.

Cruz de Malta Boldo & Menta

Cruz de Malta Boldo & Menta



This yerba mate has some big shoes to fill — Cruz de Malta is a highly popular and respectable brand in the mate world. It inevitably will be compared to their flagship, Cruz de Malta Tradicional, but it is a whole different yerba mate that I dare you to approach with an open and clean mind. It is different from its traditional brother and almost feels more Paraguayan than Argentine, and can serve as an interesting break from regular mates, especially in the hot summer days — flavored with mint and boldo, this yerba is great for both hot mate and cold tereré. Continue reading...
Nobleza Gaucha Tradicional

Nobleza Gaucha Tradicional



Soft and safe, Nobleza Gaucha Tradicional gives no reason to dislike it. Produced by the same parent company as famous and widely-loved Cruz de Malta, this mate just begs to be the one who gets introduced to novice mate drinkers. Is it enough to be on par with its more well-known cousin? Continue reading...
Taragüi Vitality

Taragüi Vitality



This yerba mate essentially is an interesting twist on Taragüi Sin Palo — same cut, same drying and aging methods, with only difference in a harvesting time, which supposed to make Taragüi Vitality even more energizing than its twin brother. The idea behind this blend stays the same, this time even more clear and obvious — complexity of taste is sacrificed for a stronger effect. But is it different enough to justify its own name and package? Continue reading...
Del Cebador Clásica

Del Cebador Clásica



Definitely one of my all-time favorite yerba mate brands, personally for me Del Cebador Clásica doesn’t seem to have any downsides at all — it’s not too hard to prepare, it has a very rich and unique taste and lasts for a very long time. This yerba mate will be a great starting point for those who want to begin exploring Uruguayan yerba mate brands, and can be a revelation for seasoned materos who are in search for something special and full of flavor. Continue reading...
Canarias Tradicional

Canarias Tradicional



Headliner of Canarias yerba mate products, Canarias Tradicional is muscular and bold. Earthy and dusty, it can appeal to experienced mate drinker who is looking for unexpected and altering taste, but can be untameable beast for new matero. For me personally, Canarias Tradicional is not an everyday mate, but I don’t think you can call yourself a mate aficionado until you try Canarias. Continue reading...
Pajarito Tradicional

Pajarito Tradicional



In Pajarito Tradicional you’ll find a yerba mate that despite being bold and strong, as you would expect from Paraguayan yerba, is not afraid of hot water, and is versatile in that sense. Don’t let the dull smell fool you — this mate packs some nice flavors both in cold and hot versions. However, is it enough to justify the lack of aroma and a very short duration, or are there other Paraguayan yerba mates that don’t make those compromises? Continue reading...
Selecta Tradicional

Selecta Tradicional



Dual nature is what makes Selecta Tradicional so unique — it shares characteristics of both Paraguayan and Argentine yerba mate. Despite being pretty good as a tereré, Selecta Tradicional is one of those rare Paraguayan brands that is probably even better with hot water. If you have never had a Paraguayan mate and want to start exploring Paraguayan brands — this could be your perfect candidate. Continue reading...
Kurupí Clásica

Kurupí Clásica



One of the best Paraguayan yerba mate brands on the market, Kurupí Clásica is a very versatile mate that is great both as hot mate and tereré. Sweet and refreshing with cold water; oaky and whiskey-like with hot water, this yerba mate will suit people who want to start exploring Paraguayan yerbas, and will be interesting enough for long-term mate drinkers. Continue reading...
Laranjeiras Tradicional

Laranjeiras Tradicional



Fresh, green and simple — it’s not a chimarrão for every day, but if you are drinking mostly Argentine or Paraguayan mate Laranjeiras Tradicional can be somewhat fun, just for a change of pace. But that over-the-top simplicity, and unpredictable difficult cut can easily lead to frustrating experiences, so it’s hard for me to recommend this erva mate. If this is the only available erva mate for you — go for it, otherwise — there are more interesting and enjoyable Brazilian brands on the market. Continue reading...
Barão De Cotegipe Tradicional

Barão De Cotegipe Tradicional



This erva mate can literally be a breath of fresh air for materos that are starting to feel bored by more common Argentine, Paraguayan and Uruguayan mates. It would be interesting enough for both regular chimarrão drinkers and materos who mainly drink other regional cuts of mate and want to freshen up their palate with something more exotic and different. Barão Tradicional is a wonderful example of what world of Brazilian mate has to offer, and another proof of how diverse is this beautiful beverage. Continue reading...
Club-Mate

Club-Mate



Club-Mate completely exceeded all my expectations — this will surely be my soft drink of choice from now on. Today, the market is saturated with overly-sweetened sodas with boring chemical taste, so it is very refreshing to see something not as sweet, with natural and interesting flavor, like Club-Mate. I’m still surprised how well they managed to transfer yerba mate flavors and effects to a soft drink. If you like traditional mate or if you like soft-drinks but tired of similar and unhealthy mainstream sodas, then give Club-Mate a shot — I think you will certainly like it as much as I did. Continue reading...