MATÉ (mat ae) n. (mass noun) 1. (also Yerba Maté) a bitter infusion of leaves, high in caffeine. Dietary suppressant. (INFO.) Ilex paraguaiensis. Family: Aquifoliaceae. ORIGIN: Quecha: mati. (USAGE) A national social custom particular to Uruguay, requiring a specific paraphernalia of equipment, the surgical attachment of a thermos flask to elbow, and a constant supply of hot water. Skill in usage whilst controlling a moto and answering a mobile ‘phone is considered a badge of national identity.