Yerba Mate gourds unlike bombillas, come in a lot more different shapes and sizes, materials, etc.
Deciding which one will be the best option for you as a Yerba Mate consumer might be though. Especially because some are taking a lot more responsibility and need to be cured every day and som not.
Regarding this, we would like to highlight the most important characteristics that every Yerba Mate gourd has, so you can decide much easier which one is the perfect gourd for you:
1. Calabash Yerba Mate gourds
Calabash Yerba Mate gourds were the first utensils from which Yerba Mate was consumed, back in the time from the indigenous Guarani tribe. They are not made out of wood, although some might mistake them, they are only made from the dried, hollowed-out calabash and scraped in different shapes, sizes, and designs!
They are very delicate and can be very easily broken if they fall or be filled with too hot water. It is always recommended that after you bought a Yerba Mate Calabash gourd to first cure it, before using it. The amazing thing about this gourds is that they give you the most out of the Yerba Mate taste, enhancing its natural bitterish flavor!
photo by: Leo Serrat
2. Wooden Yerba Mate gourds
Wooden gourds are one more type of the Yerba Mate gourds that were used in the past by the Guarani people. They are usually made from two types of South American wood, carob (Algarrobo) or palo santo.
These types of Yerba Mate gourds are very fragile and need to be cured too, especially because they can easily grow some mold on their inner walls. But if you take care of them they will give you the best pleasure while drinking your freshly brewed Yerba Mate!
3. Brazilian Cuia
The Calabash Yerba Mate gourds in Brazil are known as Cuia (or porongo). But there is an important difference between the regular Calabash gourd and this one. They are both made from the same plant but from a different part. The regular Yerba Mate Calabash gourds are made from the bottom part of the Calabash plant, but the Brazilian Cuia is made from the top half.
They are also very fragile and delicate, so they need to be cured too, but on the other hand, Cuias will also give you the best experience, drinking from a traditional gourd that was used for centuries and its natural ability to enhance the flavor of the Yerba Mate.
4. Ceramic Yerba Mate gourds
In the 21st century, many things have undergone some changes and developments, so do the Yerba Mate gourds.
The ceramic Yerba Mate gourds are the perfect choice if you don't want to spend your time on curing. They are very simple to clean and can be stored anywhere, not worrying if they will grow some mold. One more benefit with the ceramic Yerba Mate gourds is that ceramic insulates heat well, so it won’t be hot to the touch!
5. Glass Yerba Mate gourds
Another innovation of the Yerba Mate gourds are the glass gourds. Easy for use, and you don't have to be worried whether you'll burn your hands, because that problem is also solved! Nowadays they are covered with leather or other materials so it can prevent the heat and you will be able to enjoy your Yerba Mate!
photo by: Martinscphoto
6. Silicone Yerba Mate Gourds
These types of Yerba Mate gourds are in fact recommended for beginners and here's why: very affordable, easy to be cured, they don't grow mold and can't break. If you're a fan of trying new things then we recommend you trying drinking your Yerba Mate from this type of gourd.
photo by: David Siqueira
7. Guampa Yerba Mate Gourd
The last Yerba Mate gourd that we're going to discuss for is the famous Guampa Yerba Mate gourd. In Paraguay, people are using this Yerba Mate gourd for their national drink - tereré which is iced Yerba Mate. They are mostly traditionally made from a bull’s horn, but you can also find them made out of glass, stainless steel, and sometimes wood.
Whether you decide to try drinking your Yerba Mate from a traditional Calabash gourd or a glass gourd, the most important thing is for you to always have a great experience while drinking Yerba Mate!