July 24, 2019

Why Roast Yaupon?

By Abianne Falla
Why Roast Yaupon? - CatSpring Yaupon

We have three different preparation methods-- Pedernales, Lost Maples, and Marfa.  These are, respectively, our green yaupon, medium roast, and dark roast preparations.


That’s great, but what does it mean?

It took time to finesse our preparation process for our yaupon.  In our work with yaupon, we drew on a number of influences. Our process now is a hybrid of traditional Japanese tea and Yerba Maté preparation methods.


 All our preparation methods start with leaves we hand-harvest from wild yaupon bushes.  These plants have nothing but sunshine and rainwater on them—never any pesticides or fertilizer.  Here in the South, yaupon flourishes and many farmers tear it out as a weed to clear space for fields or graze patches for cows.  We provide an alternative sustainable harvesting pathway for the yaupon that reduces the weed for farmers and ensures enough yaupon can grow back.

Since the leaves are 50% water, the preparation process begins as soon as they are harvested.  We first dry all the leaves. Drying makes the yaupon more shelf-stable. We’re then able to pack and ship the yaupon  all over the world without deterioration in the product quality. As an added bonus, the antioxidants in yaupon are stable, unlike traditional green tea which can lose antioxidants in the preparation process.  Drying also locks in the natural flavor of the leaves, so you get more of the delicious flavor of yaupon in every cup.

This is the process for our Pedernales preparation.  One simple step to delicious earthy yaupon.


For our Lost Maples and Marfa varieties, we roast the leaves. In traditional teas, the roasting step creates many of the variations.  Different flavor profiles are created based on how long the leaves are roasted and how fast the process goes. When our yaupon is roasted, the leaf color, flavor profile, and aroma change.  It gives them toasty notes that resemble the taste of a cup of coffee. The leaves darken in the process and the infusion has a darker color. We roast the Marfa batch longer than the Lost Maples.  This makes the Marfa a darker brew than our Lost Maples.

Each of our preparation methods have all the same yaupon benefits.  They contain less caffeine than a cup of coffee, enough to give you an energetic boost without jitters.  All three preparation methods contain theobromine. This handy compound is what makes you happy when you eat chocolate.  It’s also good for your oral health so you get a healthier smile too. And all of the varieties have polyphenols and flavonals which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties to bolster your immune system.

Try all three varieties to taste the difference and feel good with each cup you drink.  You’ll love the taste and your body will thank you.