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Argentina with Yerba Mate.

The National Yerba Mate Festival

Enjoy your travel in Argentina....drinking Yerba Mate!
Yerba Mate is a medicinal herb of the holly family and is Argentina's equivalent of green tea.

Harvested in the northern areas of the country, it duly finds its way into the cupboards of every Argentine home.

If is your first time for Yerba Mate,a good way to taste it is to go ,”The National Mate Festival” in the Expo Yerba centre in Apóstoles.

A stroll around the festival, or indeed any part of the country, will reveal a nation of people who cannot survive more than three hours of the day without sucking on a metal pipe, otherwise known as a bombilla (pronounced bomb-bee'-sha), that sticks out of a gourd filled with the green swamp-like concoction.

Well if most of the population swear by it then surely there must be something to it?

The benefits of mate are multiple. It is said to reduce fatigue and blood pressure, even suppress appetite, depending on the amount you drink. It contains no caffeine, so overdosing is not a problem...

Mate comes in a variety of brands and blends. Yerba, (pronounced j-e-rba) is one well known brand, also a synonym for mate, as is taraguí.

Argentines can spend hours round the kitchen table drinking and ritual sharing of the calabaza, or gourd, can break barriers of class, gender, age and race.

National Yerba Mate Festival 4 - 9 November 2008

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