Argentine Yerba Mate, Part V

[I’m collaborating on a post series with the National Institute for Argentine Yerba Mate. In Part 1, we explored how to make yerba mate and Part II showcased origins of the brew. We drank many versions of yerba mate in Part III  and had cocktails in Part IV. Today…we are brewing up a concentrate! Hope you enjoy.]

As someone who works primarily from home, I drink and snack all day long. Part of that is habit and curiosity. I love cooking and eating above all else. And the other part is because working with food/drink is the core of my job. Sometimes I get so preoccupied with the work itself that I forget how neat, how lucky I am to scout drink trends and products as my work. On any given afternoon I’ll have several products on the table – some bottled, others just brewed, and yet other non-liquid samples that are a work in progress. A few things I’ve been loving: delicate, cold brewed teas, shrubs, and concentrates.

Concentrates are something you usually see only in cafes, hotels, or restaurants. Next time you order chai at the local cafe, watch how they make it. Odds are they’ll pour the chai from a concentrate (usually a 32oz or larger carton), add milk and steam. We’d all love to have spices ground and simmered for every order, but a concentrate makes sense in a cafe setting…

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Argentine Yerba Mate, Part IV

[I’m collaborating on a post series with the team at Argentine Yerba Mate. In Part 1, we explored how to make yerba mate, Part II showcased origins of the brew, in Part III we drank yerba mate in different forms. Today…we are making drinks! Hope you enjoy.]

Noelle hosted dinner on Saturday. There was a big, warm loaf of country bread and lots of salted butter. A simple salad with shallot vinaigrette. Cherry tomatoes cooked down with fennel and sausages and tossed with orecchiette. Warming, cozy food. We drank lots of cider and had cookies and ice cream for dessert. But before all that…I showed up to her place early, multiple varieties of Argentine Yerba Mate in hand. Time for a cocktail? Noelle is great at brainstorming on the spot and in a matter of minutes we came up with two simple pre-dinner drinks for the night…

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Argentinian Yerba Mate, Part III

[I’m collaborating on a three-part series with the team at Argentinian Yerba Mate. In Part 1, we explored how to make yerba mate, Part II showcased origins of the brew, and today we’ll look at ways to work with yerba mate as an ingredient. Hope you enjoy!]

I’ve been in San Francisco for the past month and found yerba mate in many places. Argentina is the world’s largest producer of yerba mate, and it is neat to see how one country’s national drink is adapted in different countries. Our default approach to yerba mate in the US is to use it as we do tea – brew and drink. But once you view yerba mate as an ingredient or component of something larger than a standalone brew…the possibilities are endless.

You know how nitro coffee got really popular the past few years? You’ll start seeing nitro tea everywhere in the next few years. Boba Guys offers a rotation of nitro teas and they recently had nitro yerba mate at the Potrero location. The pour is wonderful, bright and frothy with a bit of sweetness. I like how it’s served it in a beer glass, feels pretty decadent in the middle of the day ^-^

Not far in the Mission neighborhood is Stable Cafe. Here yerba mate appears twice on the short drinks menu. You can order it as a classic hot or iced brew…or opt for a yerba mate latte. It’s served with whole milk, almond milk, oat milk. I like it best with oat milk, and a seat at the beautiful outdoor garden. The color is a shade lighter than a classic latte and drinks smoothly with the oat milk rounding out the bitter eges. You get the satisfaction of drinking a coffee-esque beverage but with a focused, energized calm (as opposed to the jittery coffee buzz). The caffeine content between Argentinian yerba mate and coffee is similar, but caffeine in yerba mate is released in the body gradually so you get an sustained type of energy…

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Argentinian Yerba Mate, Part II

[I’m collaborating on a three-part series with Argentinian Yerba Mate. Over the course of the next few months we’ll explore how to make/drink yerba mate, origins of the brew, and ways to work with yerba mate as an ingredient. Hope you enjoy Part II today ^-^]

Over in Part I, we got a brief overview of Argentinian yerba mate and brewed yerba mate in a French press (instead of traditional gourd). I love the gourd, but it’s not always practical and the French press is an excellent tool for the everyday drinker.

I’ve also tried brewing Argentinian yerba mate in gaiwans and small 6oz pots, but French press works best if gourd is not an option. (I’ve had yerba mate ground superfine and pulled like a shot of espresso which was neat…subject for another day!) Today…

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Argentinian Yerba Mate, Part I

[I’m collaborating on a three-part series with Argentinian Yerba Mate. Over the course of the next few months we’ll explore how to make/drink yerba mate, origins of the brew, and ways to work with yerba mate as an ingredient. Hope you enjoy Part I today ^-^]

Ever since that one afternoon in Mendoza (scroll to the middle of the post), I’ve had an eye out for Argentinian yerba mate wherever I go. It’s not as common in the US, so I often brew yerba mate at home. Always during the day, and with a good snack.

Argentina is the world’s leading producer of Yerba mate. It’s also happens to be the country’s national drink.

The crushed leaves come from the yerba mate tree, an evergreen plant native to the Misiones Province of Argentina. The production process of the leaves is 100% natural and the name yerba mate is a combination of yerba (‘herb’ in Spanish) and mate (the name of the infusion).

Tradition (this drink is centuries old) calls for yerba mate to be made in a gourd, but I like to simplify things with…

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