Feel the good energy! Yerbmate was introduced to me by my friends X and S, who met and married in Paraguay before moving to Helsinki (and briefly, Vaasa *sour face* haha). They were so generous to share a bit of culture from Paraguay at X's Carnival style birthday party, in which the attendees represented over 8 countries!
Yerbamate is a product popular throughout parts of South America, made with the leaves of a certain holly bush. There are known properties of caffeine in this drink, so it rivals other types of drinks, like tea and coffee. Traditionally, the Yerbamate (or 'herb cup' as an indirect translation), is enjoyed from a guampa with a bombilla. The guampa can be made from a hollowed gourd, or in this case from the special green wood of native trees. The bombilla, also shown in the picture above, is a small metal straw with a sieve at the end. That's convenient, because the sieve eliminates the need for tea bags or a tea ball.
After a little sharing and dancing (and dress up and face painting), we were also treated to some veggies pastries and kim chee sauce (a Korean version made by our Scottish friend, P) and numerous candies from the UK and US.
Buen Provecho! Y Feliz Cumpleanos, y Feliz Carnival :)