Maté is a traditional South American beverage that is prepared in a way similar tea, but is in fact not tea. Rich in vitamins, amino acids, and boasting more antioxidants than green tea, this beverage is referred to as a stimulant.
Maté is a traditional South American beverage that is prepared in a way similar tea, but is in fact not tea. Rich in vitamins, amino acids, and boasting more antioxidants than green tea, this beverage is referred to as a stimulant. Just how much and what type of caffeine is present in mate is a point of contention amongst experts, but it is generally accepted that maté’s caffeine affects the body differently than other types.
Widespread maté consumption can be traced back to the 16th century, but it was drunk by the indigenous people of what is now Brazil before then.
Traditionally, mate is enjoyed in a social group-setting. A “host” or cebador prepares and serves the mate in a gourd, using a filter/straw called a bombilla to sip the mate. For our modern purposes at The Snooty Fox, we like to brew mate in a french press. Like traditional preparation, using a french press gives you direct leaf and water interaction. This yields better taste and more nutrients in your brew. Using a ratio of 2 teaspoons of mate leaf per 8 ounces of water, scoop appropriate amount into brewing vessel. Next, using cool water, fully pre-moisten the leaves. Pour off and add hot water. Temperature range is fairly wide, somewhere between 150 and 180 degrees. Let the mate leaves steep for at least 3 minutes. Typical brew time is 4-6 minutes, but if you plan on several infusions, a shorter steep time of 3 minutes is recommended. Steeping temperature and brew time are flexible variables when preparing mate, so we encourage you to try making your favorite drink with several different temp/time combinations. This may seem fuzzy but that’s half the fun, right?