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Recent Tasting Notes
Finally busted out my mate gourd and steeped myself up some mate to enjoy over the course of a morning the more traditional way! It felt really good to be using some oft neglected teawate, but at the same time…
Jesus, I forgot how intense/strong a gourd of mate is when prepared the traditional way and I’m not really all that used to it. I think I drank like a litres worth of tea made this way, just from topping up the gourd as I was drinking it (like grandpa style for mate) but it was so strong that I wasn’t enjoying it as much as expected. It was even kind of soapy tasting!? But the citrus notes were nice! I think I either just need to use a modified prep method or just push myself enough times that I get more used to the taste.
Or a combination of both, maybe…
Montreal Tea Festival – Tea #14
This was the second blend that Mateina was sampling at the festival – and it’s actually the one in their line up that I had sort of expected to like the most so I was excited to try it. I’m not sure if it’s because I thought I’d like it (so my expectations were higher) or not, but I didn’t find this flavour very good. I mean, it did taste distinctly like mate in the same way that the menta did – smooth but lightly smoky grassy/herbaceous taste with some minerality. It even had a hint of mint to it as well – there is actually mint in this blend too. However, berry or hibiscus!? Nah.
The sample did have a slight pinkish tint to it, not as intense/robust as hibiscus often is but enough present to know that it was in the blend. I just didn’t taste any tartness/berry at all though, so I honestly can’t say it was well executed. I’m glad I got a chance to try it – I may have blind bought this one otherwise and I think I’d have been disappointed if I had…
Made this as a morning cuppa yesterday for that early day boost/pick me up. The dry leaf smells pretty spearmint heavy, but in terms of taste this is more a balance of grassy and smoky (and maybe just a bit bitter) yerba mate with peppermint. It’s kind of weird because peppermint is usually pretty relaxing for me and I don’t generally want to feel relaxed when I’m drinking yerba mate/a stimulant blend. The peppermint is also more of that muddy European tasting peppermint; less menthol/crispness.
However it was still a nice cup overall!
Montreal Tea Festival – Tea #13
There were two yerba mate booths at the festival that we saw, this one and one carrying yerba mate RTDs (more on those later) – and I found both really interesting! I own a traditional mate gourd, and I like mate a lot but I’ve probably only used my gourd a total of three times in the four or five years I’ve owned it!? You use a decent amount of mate when brewing in the gourd, so I can’t really use it when I only buy like 25-50g of mate from a company to try out. But really, the main problem is that I haven’t found a good yerba mate to buy where I haven’t had to purchase something crazy like a minimum of 750g of it! Yerba mate isn’t very dense – that’s a whole lot of mate!! And I don’t know where the hell I’m gonna store it, it’s not like I’m drinking mate daily…
So, I was really hoping to find at least one mate here I could pick up, since they were selling in 220g increments – which seems like the perfect amount! This was one of two blends they were sampling hot; I got a chance to try both of them and of the two I preferred this one. It’s got a bit of that smoky grassy/herbaceous mate note, but ultimately I found it very smooth and the mint, while subtler than anticipated, was nice and crisp/refreshing. I like the idea of a nice mint/mate combo to start off the morning with, so based on the sample I tried I did actually end up picking up this flavor – along with a third flavour that I didn’t get a chance to try but that smelled fucking INCREDIBLE.