La Merced De Campo has a classic earthy Argentine yerba mate nose. It doesn’t surprise with exotic or weird notes, but hits you with bright and familiar smells that we all love in yerba mate — dried plums, hay, wood, soil. The nose of La Merced De Campo is bold and sweet without even a hint of smokiness.
It is no surprise that this yerba mate has classical Argentine con palo cut — perfect example of a great balance between leaves, stems and powder. Leaves have medium grind and vary in color from pale and light to dark and swampy green without any signs of burnt brown ones, which is a good indicator of a qualitative drying and aging processes. Speaking of aging — La Merced De Campo is aged for 12 months which is a pretty good, though not very long duration. Stems are not too big and not too small and there is just enough of them to keep the cut of this yerba mate in harmony. Powder is also present and provides a nice “glue” between leaves and stems.
La Merced De Campo doesn’t like cold temperatures of water — anything lower than 70°C / 160°F makes this mate too weak and boring. 70°C - 75°C / 160°F - 170°F water brings life into La Merced De Campo and its taste starts to correspond to the bright and pronounced nose of this yerba mate.
Most convenient way to get ideal water temperature is to use an electric kettle with temperature control like this one. If you prefer traditional kettle you can use laser thermometer or simpler food thermometer.
Suave, equilibrado y amigable — soft, balanced and friendly — is written on a box of La Merced De Campo, and it perfectly characterizes the flavor profile of this mate. This is a classical Argentine mate taste without any extremes — not very sweet, like Playadito Con Palo, not very strong, like Rosamonte Tradicional. It is an instantly recognizable taste that will not surprise nor disappoint. In case of La Merced De Campo it is not the unusual and unique notes, but basic inherent flavors, delivered so clearly, fairly and crisply, that make this mate so good. Simple and light-bodied, La Merced De Campo can be a perfect introduction to mate world, showing an excellent example of how bold earthy flavors can be light, tasty and welcoming for inexperienced palate.
Pleasant and relatively long aftertaste with a slight hint of caramel serves as a nice continuation and rounds up the satisfying experience of La Merced De Campo. The finish is silky smooth with no signs of bitterness or astringency, although it is still bright and clear.
Well-rounded and overall high-quality cut yielded in unprecedented duration — on average I managed to get whopping 30-40 refills from La Merced De Campo, making it an outstandingly long mate. The taste was very consistent from first to last refill, slowly and gracefully transferring to a pleasant and sweet lavado.
The last thing you want while drinking mate is to constantly re-heat you water or add more ice to it. No matter if it's hot mate or cold tereré, use a vacuum bottle or a thermos.
La Merced De Campo provided long and sustained energy and focus — this is a great morning and afternoon mate that really goes well with some productive work. It shouldn’t be too dangerous to drink it in the evening, but I would advise to be cautious with it, as this mate feels much more energizing than most of Argentine brands.
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