Lesson Transcript

¿Qué tal? Soy Brenda.
Y yo soy Romina.
Somos tus profesoras de español. Y hoy vamos a hablar de el mate argentino.
So today, we’re going to talk about the Argentinian mate Qué es y cómo prepararlo, so what… what is it and how to prepare it.
Okay, first off, the mate is an Argentinian tea that, absolutely, everybody drinks. It’s a big, big favorite. It’s sort of like a replacement for coffee or black tea, right? We have it as soon as we wake up, but we also have it throughout the day and it’s what we use to keep ourselves awake, right?
Right, yes. So it’s an… it’s an infusion like any tea. I think I would compare it more to tea, but in terms of the culture and how we drink it and how often we do it, I would say it’s definitely more compatible to coffee.
But, you know, I don’t think you can have coffee for say, six hours.
But we do have with mate and I’m not sure if you have seen it before. If you have traveled to Argentina or if you have and know Argentinian friends, I’m sure that they drink mate. Everybody in Argentina, no matter their social status or their age, everybody in Argentina drinks mate. And if you are a soccer fan, I’m sure you have seen Messi as well drinking mate throughout the matches, you know, in the…
Yes, yes. One of the things that I love the most about mate is that there is a… a whole culture around it. It’s a very social activity. We… we, we can drink mate by ourselves and we do, but we also drink mate with friends and family. So for example, let’s say that you have a… a friend coming over to your house to visit you, the first…, the first thing you offer them is to have mates.
Quere… querés unos mates? No?
It’s like the very first thing that you offer. Would you like to have some mates with me?
The tradition is that, if someone goes to your house, you have to offer them a mate. So, first of all, mate is actually non… is not expensive and it’s just basically water with a bit of the herbs, so everybody has mate in their… in their homes.
I was just saying, before that, we could talk a little bit about mate and going out for a picnic, no? Going out to a park. It’s actually quite common to bring mate with you, to put a hot water in a thermos, put it in a bag and then you go with your friends to have a picnic with mate.
Where we drink it? So basically, it’s at… it’s at home, when you have guests over, when you go to the parks, when you go to the… the beach, when you go to work. A lot of people have it in their workplace. So, it’s something that you just drink if you’re here by yourself or share it around with people.
Let’s talk about what we need to drink mate. So we basically need yerba… yerba. We need el mate, this is mate that is made up of the cup and then bombilla is the straw. Okay, so the bombilla is usually made of silver or other metals.
Usually, you can find… a lot of bombillas have copper at the end where… where you have to put your lips, right? And the reason why they use copper is because copper kills the bacteria.
How we drink it is you pour the yerba into the mate cup, then you place the bombilla, and then you obviously have to boil some water just before it boils. It doesn’t have to boil, completely, the water. You have to pay attention before the water boils. You stop the kettle and then you put it in the thermos to keep it warm, but you can also drink straight from… from the kettle by pouring some hot water into the cup.
I would say two warnings when it comes to drinking mate. First, is that although the water is right before boiling, it’s still really, really hot. So, when you’re offered mate for the first time, just be careful. Try to take small sips, so you don’t burn your tongue, okay? Because that actually happens to a lot of foreigners.
Muy bien amigos. We really hope that you try mate. If you have friends, do try it a little bit. Usually, people will give you, maybe, a sweet mate to start with because it can be a little bit bitter if you just drink it without sugar. But maybe you like bitter tea and if you do, then I think you really will like it and it’s a great, as you can see, tradition. There’s so many rules and it’s really cool. I feel that it’s really cool. It’s something that’s been going on for generations and generations in Argentina. And, we really hope that you like it and you try it. And now, we hope that you understand how it works, where it comes from, and what it is. Thank you so much for watching. Muchas gracias! Enos vemos en la próxima clase. Adios!