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Kraus Pure Leaf Yerba Mate Review

Kraus Pure Leaf Organic Yerba Mate Review ©Circle of Drink Inc 2017Origin: Santo Domingo Savio, San Ignacio, Misiones, Argentina > Lote 306
Producer: Kraus S.A.
Cut: Clean Cut > Minimal dust and stems
Body: Light / Medium
Cycle: Short
Aged: Conventional
Grown: Organic (USDA) > Unsmoked
Water Temp: 150–170ºF / 70ºC

Walking through the Kraus factory just after breakfast during the heart of the harvest season in July, I’m raptured by the mesmerizing mechanics of it all. In one hole down goes piles of freshly picked yerba, out another, partially dried yerba billowing steam across the seasoned bricks of the building. There’s a special energy here.

Milton, scion to the Kraus estate, explains the process, step-by-step, how the mate is cultivated, processed, sorted, and packaged. All Kraus brands share that eponymous grassy-hay-sharp-green essence — it’s their signature, akin to a nuanced apple-apricot flavor found in a dry riesling.

Compared to Kraus Orgánic, Pure Leaf is notably sharper and less fruity. By removing most of the dust and reducing the stems, the ‘pure leaf’ is on center stage, showing strong green tea and light smoke character.

Kraus Pure Leaf Organic Yerba Mate Review ©Circle of Drink Inc 2017

The body is rather light, but the flavors are full and bursting with green, barnyard, hay energy. I consider this one of the best mates available for blending with additional herbs, particularly citrusy and zesty ones. The direct grassiness of the mate contrasts the fruitiness of additional herbs quite well.

My instincts tell me that the unique flavors of this mate come mainly from the factory, where a combination of natural gas, wood, and custom machinery are used to coax and shape the flavor profiles before a natural dying period of around 9 months, as the mate slowly absorbs the continuing influence of the factory, people, weather, additional mate, and all surrounding elements.

What a beautiful symbiosis.