SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Kové (koh-veh) Hard Yerba Mate, the world’s first 5% ABV Yerba Mate brand, has secured a distribution agreement with Portland-based Upstanding Distribution to expand availability of the sippable hard tea seltzers to Oregon. Light, refreshing and bold in flavor, Kové is made in San Diego with just a few simple, sustainably sourced organic ingredients – Yerba Mate, sugar cane, and yeast – and flavored with juices, herbs and spices. It’s gluten-free, vegan and low in caffeine (10 mg). The brand is poised for impressive growth and expansion as alternative alcohol beverages continue to trend and are projected to maintain rapid market share gains in 2021 and beyond. Kové is now available in four-packs of 12 o.z. cans ($9.99 SRP), specialty single 16 o.z. cans, and on draft at select local retailers and taprooms such as Market of Choice and John’s Marketplace locations, as well as local taprooms like The BeerMongers & Hoplandia Beer.
At the heart of Kové is Yerba Mate, a plant native to the central and southern regions of South America’s rainforests. The tea-like beverage has been consumed for centuries, and was first adopted by the Guarani´ indigenous people. Traditionally sipped out of a Calabash gourd using a bombilla (or metal straw), Yerba Mate is customarily shared amongst friends, passed in a circle, in a social ceremony. Imbibed daily in Latin America, Yerba Mate is rich in antioxidants, nutrients and possesses naturally occurring caffeine that is known to increase energy and improve mental clarity.
Conceived in summer 2020 by Alex Montelbano, Ryder England, and Josh Makler, “Kové” translates to “to live” or “the art of living” in the Guarani´ language. The friends share both a reverence for Yerba Mate, as a catalyst for building community and connection, plus a background working for innovative RTD alternative beverage brands, including Boochcraft Hard Kombucha and JuneShine Hard Kombucha. Social and environmental stewardship are among Kove´’s fundamental values. The brand has aligned with 1% for the Planet, with the ultimate goal of achieving climate neutrality, and works with reputable partners to source its high-quality, organic ingredients from Mexico and Brazil.
“We are extremely excited to introduce Kové Hard Yerba Mate to my home state of Oregon,” said Kové Hard Yerba Mate Co-founder, Chief Operations Officer, and Brewmaster Josh Makler. “We believe Oregon and the entire Pacific Northwest will be a great market for us — and Hard Yerba Mate is just weird enough for Portland. Upstanding Distribution and its team are the perfect partners for us to launch and grow our presence.”
Kové’s partnership with Upstanding Distribution will make the Hard Yerba Mate available throughout Oregon, in cities including Bend, Eugene, Portland, Corvallis, and Hood River. Discover four core hard Yerba Mate flavors, plus two limited-edition releases including a collaboration with award-winning, San Diego-based Thorn Brewing Co.:
- Passion Berry Hard Yerba Mate (5% ABV): SRP $9.99/12 o.z. 4-pack and kegs. Passion fruit and blackberry – tart and tropical, with a hint of berry
- Mango Colada Hard Yerba Mate (5% ABV): SRP $9.99/12 o.z. 4-pack and kegs. Mango, orange and coconut – tropical mango with bright orange citrus
- Lemonade Iced-Tea (5% ABV): SRP $9.99/12 o.z. 4-pack and kegs. Lemon and black tea – tangy lemon citrus with rich, black tea
- Mojito (5% ABV): SRP $9.99/12 o.z. 4-pack and kegs. Spearmint and lime – crisp lime and subtle mint
- Hoppy Troppy (Kové X Thorn Brewing Co. collaboration) (5%): SRP $4.99/single 16 o.z. cans and kegs. Pineapple, El Dorado Hops, Blackberry – notes of zingy pineapple with tropical hops.
- Sweet Peach Heat (Kové artist collaboration w/ Sydney Perkins of House of Anomie) (5%) SRP $4.99/single 16 o.z. cans and kegs. Peach, Ancho Chile, Lemon and Agave
To learn more about Kové and for availability, please visit hardyerbamate.com and follow the brand on Instagram (@kove.yerbamate).
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