Rosamonte is one of the pillars of the yerba mate world, and their Seleccion Especial is arguably the best expression of the brand. It’s said to be one of the smokiest major brands.
The leaf cut is fairly large, with a moderate amount of powder and stick. The stick is pretty varied in size, from short, fat pieces to long and slender ones.
It smells like, well, mate. Hard to pull many notes from nosing it.
Flavor-wise, Rosamonte is dominated by heavy notes of smoke, earth, and tobacco. The smoke is interesting — it’s a little more ethereal than the smoke of, say, a lapsang souchong or an Islay scotch. A hint of salt comes through, with a slightly sour finish that seems to last forever.
This is a heavy, hard-hitting mate that works best hot. I’ve tried it terere, but it didn’t have the brighter notes you find in Paraguayan brands, so it tastes a bit flat.
Flavors: Bitter, Earth, Salt, Smoke, Sour, Tobacco