Tereré, Cold Yerba Mate Tea

When you think about yerba mate you usually think about the infusion of yerba mate and hot water. Rightfully so, as this is the most typical way to drink it. However, during the warmer, summer months, drinking a hot beverage may not be your cup of tea. Fortunately, you can still enjoy your favorite brand of yerba mate during the dog days of summer.

Tereré, is the infusion of cold water and yerba mate. It’s preparation is identical to the normal yerba mate process. The only difference being cold water rather then hot water. Tereré, is the yerba mate equivalent of iced coffee. To give your yerba mate infusion some flavor you could add citrus fruit juices instead of water.

Some yerba mate traditionalists, particularly Argentines, consider tereré a lesser form of yerba mate.  But in Paraguay tereré is widely accepted and typically drank during the hotter months.

The history of tereré dates back to the Guarani people who lived in Paraguay and western Brazil. It was a beverage shared by family and friends. Since the region was located in a very hot climate, it was an ideal way to keep the body cool throughout the day. The Guarani natives would carry their guampas ( yerba mate gourds usually made from ox horns ) and their bombas ( Brazilian yerba mate straws ) or bombillas, to share with their other tribe members.

Today, it’s common to see Paraguayans and other Tereré drinkers, walking to to work, school or home with their yerba mate thermos under their arms ready to enjoy their tereré all day long.

Yerba mate is meant to be shared with family and friends, read more about the traditional yerba mate ritual.

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