choisir calebasse mate
The Mate Blog

How to choose your mate calabash?

Feb 03, 2021

Many mate cups are available for purchase in France and Europe, of more or less good quality .

But then, how to choose the right mate cup? How to find high quality calabashes?


  1. Stainless steel gourds
    1. How are they made?
    2. Its advantages and disadvantages
  2. Gourd gourds: artisanal and traditional
    1. agricultural work
    2. Craftsmanship
    3. Its advantages and disadvantages
  3. Artisanal calabashes in wood, glass or ceramic

Stainless steel gourds

These are the most affordable mate bottles on the market.

These calabashes are produced in China to be exported there, these gourds are of very average quality and do not breathe traditional mate.

It's very easy to find them at Alibaba , the world's leading wholesaler, for just a few dollars each.

matte stainless calabash

Machined steel gourd

How are they made

Produced in the factory, making a stainless steel gourd is simple. All you need is a basic model and stainless steel to be able to produce in large quantities.

Most often, they come with a double wall to prevent burns and contain the heat .

Its advantages and disadvantages

This mate cup is appreciated by consumers who want to start drinking mate in a calabash.

Indeed, it is very affordable, easy to maintain and resistant . Being made of steel, cleaning the mate gourd is not necessary.

As disadvantages, we noticed that the well is more difficult to create. The walls being smooth, the grip of the yerba mate is less good.

Without the well, the infusion of the mate leaves will not be controlled and the intensity of the yerba will be stronger .

Finally, the stainless steel cup is not handmade and unfortunately does not correspond to the values ​​and history of mate.

Gourd gourds: artisanal and traditional

Natural artisanal calabashes come from squash , a fruit of the Cucurbitaceae family!

gourd fruit calabash mate

The sprout of a squash

agricultural work

Agricultural work begins with the harvest and selection of squash in South America. Indeed, it is necessary to find gourds adapted to the consumption of mate, neither too big nor too small.

The shape and thickness of the gourds are therefore important and have given rise to several types of gourds: Torpedo , Imperial or Camionero .

After the harvest, the squashes are emptied and dried for 6 months , then selected before the artisanal work.

mate squash harvest

Squash drying


The craft begins with the laying of the feet and the leather .

The feet keep the calabash straight and the leather serves, in addition to the thickness of the walls, to insulate it from hot water.

Aesthetics is also part of the craftsmanship of the mate calabash. Indeed, craftsmen usually add a circle (virola) around the “boca”, the opening of the mate cup.

The strapping can be made from stainless steel, Alpaca, Bronze, Silver or even Gold !

Engravings can also be added, on the leather or on the strapping.

You can discover these mate calabashes on our shop

calabash imperial alpaca

The craftsmanship for making a calabash

The advantages and disadvantages

Making a mate cup out of squash is time-consuming. In fact, it can take up to 2 years for the biggest calabashes, counting the growing time. This makes it rare and more difficult to access than the Steel Gourd.

cheap mate kit

Our original mate kit in squash

The natural calabash requires special attention before the first consumption of mate: it must be cured.

The cleaning is used to protect its calabash: the tannins present in the mate will create a protective layer and will also improve the flavor of your mate.

For more information on cleaning a calabash , we invite you to consult our blog article.

In addition, the maintenance of the calabash , although very simple , is necessary.

We invite you to empty the yerba mate from the mate cup, and clean it with hot water after each use .

What we love about the gourd gourd are the values ​​it reflects. Indeed, it allows us to travel for a short time in South America, due to its type of consumption of traditional mate and its originality .

Also, it brings an additional flavor to the mate thanks to the tannins, fixed to the walls of the gourd, accentuating the taste of the yerba mate.

Artisanal calabashes in wood, glass or ceramic

There is still a solution to reconcile the ease of maintenance of stainless steel or ceramic with the attachment to know-how and quality work: artisanal mate calabashes in ceramic .

These calabashes have the advantage of not requiring cleaning or maintenance while looking like two drops of water to a traditional calabash!

These are the gourds that we recommend to those who are afraid to embark on the adventure of a traditional gourd gourd!

artisanal mate calabash

A home-made truckero mate calabash

Another solution for enjoying mate in the traditional way without having to clean the gourd or worry about maintenance: wooden mate gourds .

These calabashes have the advantage of being very inexpensive to discover the tradition of mate at a lower cost while maintaining an artisanal aspect. Our wooden gourds are made from jujube.

The veins of the wood are all different and its small capacity (about 120mL) allows you to prepare small matés, perfect for the morning and new followers.

You can find everything you need for mate with a wooden calabash, a classic bombilla and 500g of our ORGANIC mate in our discovery mate kit that we offer for only 35€ .

1 comment

    Nov 01, 2021 at 12:32

    Bonjour, je suis content de la calebasse en céramique que j’ai acheté. elle est simple à entretenir et à nettoyer. Pas de mauvaise surprise de moisissures. C’est comme une tasse normale en céramique, il faut respecter son entretien.


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