This is actually my first experiment with Mate. It’s totally new to me! I received a generous box of samples from the Fusion Tea Room (thanks again!) and decided that I’d give this one a try first, because caramel flavors are very comfortable for me.
I followed the brewing instructions carefully, because I didn’t really know what it is supposed to taste like. The smell of it is definitely caramel-y, but I think the smell of the actual mate is a little odd to me.
I’m first trying it plain, without any sugar or milk. I have to agree that the chicory is a bit strong, but it’s not entirely unpleasant to me. It just sort of adds a bite. I can see that preventing me from having too much of it at one time, however.
I went ahead and followed suit with LiberTEAS and added some milk, which definitely did mellow it out nicely. I then added some sugar (the packet did say to sweeten to taste, after all!). With these additions, it really is a fun, sweet, drink. Reminiscent of a caramel latte, as LiberTEAS described.
I don’t dislike it, that’s for sure. I’m just still new to this kind of flavor, so we’ll see how it goes for me!