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Recent Tasting Notes
This yerba mate is a bit pricey but it smells and tastes great.
Just reading the box makes you believe it will taste luxurious and exotic. Here is what the box says:
“Cardamom plants grow in the monsoon forests of southern India. Known as the “Queen of Spices,” the prized seed pods have been sought after for thousands of years. Belonging to the same family of plants as ginger, cardamom has an intensely aromatic fragrance and a warm, spicy flavour.
Traditionally, the kings of India drank Chai that contained this flavorful spice. With yerba mate as the base for our chaï, we’ve added the best of fresh cardamom and other spices to create a royal cup of tea, pleasant with milk and honey.”
I drank it plain with no milk honey or sugar but It really lived up to my expectation and the description. This is definitely one of my new favorites.
I acquired half a box of this when a co-worker was cleaning out the kitchen at work. I tried to find some more locally but it isn’t available at the local stores so I ordered some more from their web site today. I really don’t want to run out of this one.
Sometimes I lead with the negatives. Maybe that’s a fault, but instead I’d like to think it prepares the taster for the experience, letting them look past the bad to the delightful. In that spirit, the bags smell like stale herbs and there’s no individual wrapping. As someone that likes to sniff teabags as well as someone who appreciates freshness in something portable like an individual tea bag, it’s hard for me to look past those petty things.
The brewed mate itself is tasty, especially with a little sweetener. The carob is subtle and the yerba mate provides littles more than body, so one is left mostly with peppermint, but if you enjoy peppermint tea, I could easily see this becoming a daily staple. If you’re more interested in the mocha, I’d look elsewhere.
This is a good mate, with a very fresh, clean taste similar to most brazilian types of yerba mate – but the cycle (in the gourd) didn’t last for more than 1.5 liters. The flavor weakened very quickly, compared to a majority of mates I’ve had before. Still a good mate for beginners, though.
Flavors: Freshly Cut Grass, Herbaceous
Another tea from a vacation. They only had 12 oz. packages or tea bags. I choose the 12 oz. package. YIKES! That’s a lot of tea! Luckily, I like the tea! It’s very green and fresh! There’s no overly vegetal smell or taste. I’ve tried it with several different flavorings and sweeteners and have enjoyed them all. (Vanilla cream Stevia, Chocolate Stevia, Maple syrup, Strawberry Chocolate Stevia) I really enjoy mates and their caffeine which makes this a tea I’ll keep in my cupboard for a long time. Re-steeps well.
This is a very green-tasting tea, so I guess it’s well named. :) I’m working through my Mate Factor Variety Pack, and this is just the plain green mate with no other stuff. I like it! I just put a bag in a normal 8oz mug, added boiling water, steeped for 5min but left the bag in while drinking it. Very low-tech, lol. I’ve done two steepings, and the second is still pretty flavourful.
The primary flavour I get from this is the peppermint, with an underlying fresh/green flavour that I assume is the yerba mate. The carob is there, but quite mild. I like this tea plain, but I like it even more with a bit of sugar. I tried adding a bit of milk as well, but I’m not really a fan of that.
Flavors: Cacao, Peppermint, Plants
If you guys saw all my samples that are unaccounted for in my virtual cupboard… I think I have 200 teas. And while I should be drinking mostly those, I seem to be in the mood for more flavoured stuff. This sample came to me courtesy of TheTeaFairy . She’s been very generous with me on more than one occasion so my house is littered with these baggies. Not a complaint, merely an observation. Please don’t stop showing me tea love, Fairy! :)
Although this is a very tasty chocolate mint tea, it still doesn’t take away the #1 spot from DAVID’s “read my lips.” I think there is more chocolate there, whereas here I am getting more mint. I should do them side by side but I’ve never had the time or inclination for those sort of experiments.
I drank this tea yesterday, added sugar and dairy-free creamer. It really is a nice dessert tea. If you haven’t had DAVIDs and you can’t compare the two you are better off. Kinda like seeing a movie before reading the book it is based on. If you liked the movie, stay away from the book.
On a side note, chipmunks are running laps in my backyard. I knew there was one but I have never ever seen him this active. And I think he brought a friend. I wonder what happened?
Originally published at The Nice Drinks In Life: http://thenicedrinksinlife.blogspot.com/2012/09/organic-dark-roast-yerba-mate.html
Type: Yerba Mate
Ingredients: Yerba Mate, Roasted Yerba Mate, Roasted Barley, Roasted Carob, Roasted Chicory
Purveyor: Mate Factor (all organic)
Preparation: One tablespoon put into an empty 10oz mug, rest of mug filled with approximately 150-degree water, sipped with bombilla
Now here is a keen angle. Mate Factor is branding its mate not as a tea, but as its own category of caffeinated coffee alternative. It really is a great job that they did. The package includes brewing instructions for a French press, a standard drip machine, even an espresso machine with a latte option. Very nice.
As for whether the product can actually work as an alternative to coffee, that depends. Someone looking for something that tastes like coffee will be disappointed; no tea or tisane will ever achieve that. But Mate Factor never sought to make something that tastes like coffee in the first place. They assembled a unique blend of ingredients, and what results is a rich, earthy brew with a flavor all its own.
The dry Dark Roast Yerba Mate, first of all, looks great. It is like looking at a fresh, prime, radiant example of pristine woodland earth in the springtime. Most of the mix is a bold, dark brown, and sprinkled about there are bright, deciduous greens and whites. The leaves smell sweet and chocolaty.
When brewed, the tisane switches gears and emits a strong scent of yerba mate. The other ingredients become quite peripheral to the aroma. The liquid is a dark brown, malty but translucent, rather like a black tea. There is nothing malty about the flavor though. The brew offers very smooth, even notes of yerba mate and chocolate. It is sweet but not so sweet that it starts to do a bad impression of chocolate milk. The barley gives it an extra dimension, a little depth and subtlety. But the principle flavor is definitely the yerba mate. This is good, because it lends credibility to the suggestion that it is meant to be brewed. Without the mate’s presence, one would wonder if it would not be better just as a shake or something.
Fortunately, the yerba mate does indeed predominate, and it tastes quite ideal as a brewed beverage. I can definitely see making a latte or cappuccino out of this; the flavor and texture would integrate with the milk perfectly. Of course, I enjoyed it just fine prepared in the traditional way. All in all, Mate Factor did a splendid job creating, as they put it, a “healthy coffee alternative.”
This is a pick me up tea as I lost an hour of sleep last night due to that stupid thing called “Daylight Savings Time.” I was horribly frustrated as I forgot to set my clock in my room an hour ahead and so I woke up thinking it was 9:30 and I would have the house to myself when it was actually 10:30 and my parents would be coming home soon from church.
Regardless, I am quite tired and I had a mate latte at a coffee shop in Burlington the other day and it was quite lovely, so I recreated it. I brewed up the mate at 195 for 5 minuets, added some maple syrup for sweetness, and topped it with some frothed soy milk. The result is an easy to make and delicious (and healthy AND a great pick me up, the perfect package :D) latte. It’s really good and I think this will be my pick me up drink of choice from now on!
I’ve come to the unfortunate realization that all of the teas on my list from yesterday won’t be able to be reviewed because I had to go to a dinner thingy last night and I stayed for much longer than expected, and I have homework to do today :( AND I have orchestra rehearsal. Meh. Regardless, I’ll try to get some of them done.
Today’s brain boost brought to you by Mate Factor. Delivered via a chia orange yerba late. With a pinch of matcha for extra green go. I think there’s just too much going into this blend without better balence. It’s not bad alone and with juice or milk it approches good.
If you’ll excuse me, I need to climb a few sequoias.
Since her reactions to coffee and creamer are worsening, my mother has finally relented in trying alternatives. I figured the caffeine rich yerba would be a good start. I can’t rate this quite yet as I don’t think I steeped it right. I used four table spoons in a two cup French press and forgot about it for twenty minutes. It came out with far too strong an aftertaste. I timed the second cup better and was surprised. Despite the dark color and list of toasty ingredients this tastes mostly like green yerba and a cacophony of extras. I’m going to give this blend a few more tries before I give up.
And the maternal unit’s reaction? “It’s okay. Too green. It needs creamer, though.”
Oh well. One problem at a time.