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Drink Review: Guayakí Yerba Mate

Well, you know us. We’re constantly looking for new and interesting energy drinks. Especially when it’s five in the morning and we’re trying to catch our seventh wind. If you’ve had your fill of cola, energy drinks and…yes, even coffee…it’s possible to look elsewhere. One bit of elsewhere are these yerba mate drinks from Guayakí.

Now, I’m not going to get into what yerba mate is. Especially since the folks at their website have an extensive section about what it is and what it does. What I’m going to get into is what we care about most around here: does it work and what does it taste like?

We checked out all three flavors: Empower Mint, Raspberry Revolution and Traditional Mate. It’s pretty clear you’re drinking yerba mate here, because they all three share the underlying rooty, almost smoky flavor. They’ve sweetened it with organic evaporated cane juice to the point where it’s easy enough to sip or lightly chug (especially if the stuff is nice and cold). It’s not unpleasant in the least. I’m not a huge fan of mint normally, but if mint’s your deal you’ll appreciate the addition, just like my personal favorite is the raspberry variation. Is it the tastiest thing I’ve ever thrown down? No. But it beats the pants off of a lot of energy drinks. Because a lot of those taste like sweetened ass but we’ll drink them anyway. But here’s where the effectiveness comes in.

Mate has a slew of vitamins and antioxidants, not to mention caffeine. After downing one of these, even I, with my ridiculously high tolerance for stimulants, could feel an added oomph. That would mean for most normal people, this would be a really nice kick. They mention “mental clarity” as well, and while I can’t vouch for that–self-medication is a bitch, people–I can say that I was able to get another two hours out of the evenings where I tried these, just because my engine had gotten a nice boost that I could then channel into productivity.

So bottom line is: it’s organic, they believe in fair trade, the stuff is tasty enough for my purposes and it provides the sort of boost you need. And it does so without all of the stuff people are skittish about: like artificial sweeteners and high fructose corn syrup and crap like that. Would I drink it again? In a heartbeat. Good stuff. To snag some of your own, check out their website here.