The leaves of the Yerba mate plant are used in the preparation of beverages. Some of the drinks are hot, few with dry leaves, some bitter and few others with fresh leaves. However you prefer this healthy beverage, this famous drink is referred to as chimarrao in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul. To know more about the benefits of this drink, search www.mayoclinic.org and read through the research articles.
Chimarrao is a variety of Yerba mate which is an evergreen plant of the holly shrub. This plant can grow as tall as 12 meters, and they are pruned at regular intervals. The Guarani Indians were the first to use this plant and they believed that it could heal their body and cleanse their system. It is now a popular health drink enjoyed by millions across the globe, particularly in regions of South America.
Of Ethics And Customs
In Brazil, there is a ritual that accompanies preparation of this drink. Friends and family members huddle close to each other in a circle while the host prepares the drink in a” cuia.” They drink the first sip of the infusion using a straw called as “ bomba” or “bombilla.” After this custom, the cup or gourd is refilled with the drink and passed to each member in the circle. This signifies a bond of friendship and acceptance.
The Brazilian Yerba mate differs in taste and is usually bitter when compared to its Uruguayan mate. If you plan a trip to Brazil, do not miss drinking this exotic drink as each region has their own variety of mate that varies in composition and particle size.
Brazilian Mate Vs. Uruguayan Yerba Mate
· Texture and appearance
Uruguayan do not grow their own mate and get most of the produce from Brazil which explains the similarity of the yerba in these regions. This type of mate appears fuller, has a smooth appearance and appears cream-like. It is mostly powdery in nature with the presence of the chopped leaves amidst them. These are devoid of any stems and has a distinctly bitter taste.
Exercise caution while preparing this drink as the small particles can clog the bombilla.
Appearance Of Leaves
Notice how the Uruguayan mate appears. This Yerba does not contain twigs as it is believed that they cause severe heartburn and acidity. Others affirm that it is the leaf that has nutritional value and that the twig serves no purpose. Whatever are the beliefs and reasons, Uruguayans enjoy their drink without twigs.
Uruguay and mate are inseparable where codes and jargons revolving around this drink have led to the rise of a phenomenon called ‘rioplatense’. You will find people holding a gourd or cup and engaging themselves in long hours of talks.
Tips To Enjoy Mate
By now, it is known that this drink is synonymous with the culture of the city. If you plan to enjoy this drink with a Brazilian friend these tips should help you.
· Never wipe the mouthpiece of the bomba before you sip your drink. It can offend your host or other members of the circle.
· Do not try to drink the mate in a hurry or forcefully grab the gourd or cup. Wait for your turn and then sip the drink.
· Never attempt to rearrange or mess up with the arrangement of bombilla.
As is evident, this drink signifies plenty of things to Brazilians. For few people, it stands for an emotional connection while others take pride in the history of the mate. There is one factor that appears common to all the 4 varieties of mate- they are nutritious and good for you.