Located at 108 N. State Street, Block Thirty Seven is adding a little spice to their collection this spring with Chicago-based Macanudo Mate, a traditional Argentinian yerba mate tea & sandwich bar inside of the shoe company, Chinelas. The new 900 sq-ft space will tell the story of Argentinian-American designer/founder Christine Picerno’s grandmother, whose ethnic roots set the stage for inspiration…from food to shoes.
Located on the lower level pedway (across from Starbucks), Chinelas and Macanudo Mate synergize in one space to offer you both the tango and gaucho experience. “This is a very exciting time for Chinelas because it’s our first official storefront and we’re doing it in a unique way that brings a taste of Argentina to the heart of Chicago,” says Chinelas founder Christine Picerno. Macanudo Mate (mah-kah-noo-doh) will be offering a traditional Argentinian yerba mate tea & sandwich bar featuring grab-and-go options such as sandwiches de miga, empanadas, alfajores and yerba mate. “Whenever something good happened, my father would say ¡Macanudo!, which translates to great or fantastic. It’s used to express satisfaction and reminds me of my Dad, so I thought it was the perfect name,” says Picerno.
All items served at Macanudo Mate are authentic to Argentina and the Yerba Mate will be served in a traditional gourd with a metal straw. “Chicagoans know about mate, but no one is serving it authentically this way,” says Picerno. Yerba Mate has the strength of coffee, the health benefits of tea, and the euphoria of chocolate, all in one beverage. “It’s truly the most balanced, stimulating tea with so many health benefits from reducing inflammation and obesity to protecting the body against cancer.” Yerba Mate contains 24 vitamins and minerals, 15 amino acids, and abundant polyphenols.
A variety of Empanadas will rotate savory & sweet fillings from beef, chicken and veggie to cinnamon & apples and nutella & bananas. Sandwichesde Miga (mee-gah), multi-layered sandwiches similar to English Tea varieties without any crust and Alfajores (al-fa-hor-es), dulce de leche sandwich cookies round out the menu. “All specialties are family recipes and homemade daily by my husband,” says Picerno. “I can’t think of a better way to acknowledge my family’s culture and all of the delicious food my grandmother used to make us.” The menu will range from $2.50 - $9.95.
In celebration of Macanudo Mate's opening week, May 6-10, the tea room will be hosting daily events filled with teas and treats.
Monday - Friday: Yerba Mate Demos! Stop in at 2pm to Macanudo Mate for a Yerba Mate demo! Enjoy a 15-20 minute tutorial from husband and wife team, Christine & Mike, plus free tea and bites to sample. **Open to the public**
Tuesday, May 7th: Interactive Empanada Class! Join Macanudo Mate from 5:30pm - 6:30pm for a "How to Make Empanadas" class. Guests will prep their own sweet empanadas with guidance from Chef Mike during this interactive session. Enjoy your work of art afterward while browsing the latest styles from Chinelas. **Open to the public. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org to secure your spot.**
Opening Week Deal! To sweeten the deal, Chinelas will be offering 10% off to anyone who shops during the week of May 6th - 10th, plus a complimentary Yerba Mate and alfajore cookie!