So we’ve already gone over some of the general types of yerba mate as well as introduced chimarrão erva mate during an online mate circle. Today let’s further explore the differences between Gaucho Mate (Uruguayan) and Chimarrão (Brazilian). You’ll also learn how to prepare a delicious chimarrão mate, which takes a bit more patience and skill.
Chimarrão, pronounced shee-mah-HOE, is the portuguese word for traditional yerba mate. It’s similar to fine powdery mate, such as Canarias and Del Cebador, which I refer to as Gaucho Mates, grown in Southern Brazil for the Uruguayan market.
Chimarrão is a bit different than Gaucho Mate, though sharing many attributes. Also grown in Brazil, chimarrão mates are closer to Japanese Matcha green tea than Gaucho Mate. Unlike Gaucho Mates, which are darker and have richer flavors (resulting from the aging process), these mates are bright green (non-aged) and have a marked grassy/earthy flavor which many Brazilians have come to love.
You’ll notice that each Gaucho / Chimarrão Mate has its own proportion of stems to leaves to powder.
It’s easy to lump these two categories of mate into one, since both are powdery mates from Brazil. However, Uruguayans usually stick to Gaucho Mates and Brazilians typically prefer Chimarrão.
When preparing chimarrão, you can use any mate gourd that you like. Uruguayans prefer smaller calabash gourds for their Gaucho Mate and Brazilians use larger ones. Today, I’ll be using a smaller calabash gourd which works just fine for chimarrão.
Keep in mind that you can prepare Gaucho and Chimarrão (virtually any mate) the same way, however, you’ll need to be more aware of the bombilla placement with chimarrão since it has more powder, making it vulnerable to clogging.
Ready to try some Chimarrão yerba mate—or how about some Gaucho Mate?. Head on over to our store — we have plenty of yerba mate kits that include everything you need to get started. It’s been a pleasure. Salud.