Though the necessities of a balanced diet require me to be an omnivore, I am a carnivore at heart (there’s a very dark joke in there somewhere). A good burger or steak always gets my mouth watering. That’s why beef jerky, which is basically steak in snack form, is one of life’s greatest pleasures. You can imagine my kid-in-a-candy-store glee, then, when Corpus Christi finally got its own Beef Jerky Outlet store. It’s like the place was built just for me: hot sauce, spice rubs, and most importantly, walls of beef jerky. The spiciest offering in the store comes from the Smoky Mountain line, dubbed simply Fire.
Beef, Soy Sauce (water, wheat, soybeans, salt), Worcestershire Sauce (distilled vinegar, molasses, corn syrup, water, salt, caramel color, garlic powder, sugar, spices, anchovies, tamarind, and…)
Okay, so a misprint on the package has cut off the rest of the ingredients, but I can tell you that, according to the rest of the label, this flavor does include ghost peppers. Also, never forget that Worcestershire sauce contains anchovies. That still weirds me out.
Most of the jerky pieces in this bag are fairly large slabs of beef that have a slightly reddish color from the sauce. Of course, to intimidate lesser jerky eaters, Fire also has pepper flakes all over the place.
Smell and Taste:
This bag smells like carnivore heaven. The sauce and pepper smell is there, but it doesn’t overpower the simple and delectable scent of beef. That’s why we’re really here, after all. In terms of pure flavor, the beef jerky itself is juicy, with a texture more on the chewy side than the tough side. This stuff is made to have a shelf life of a year, but it tastes very fresh!
I have no idea how much ghost pepper actually went into the making of this jerky, but it must have been a decent amount. After a few pieces, my mouth has the burn I crave, though it never gets unbearable. Smoky Mountain’s Fire is more than likely a bit too spicy for people who can’t handle the heat, but it won’t wreck the standard chilehead. I’m giving it a Mean. The juiciness of the beef, combined with the sexy fiery bite from the sauce, also gets this product high marks for flavor. In fact, this is the second bag I’ve purchased, and I imagine it will disappear just as quickly as the first. Yep, this one’s a Notable.
Beef. It’s what’s for dinner. And breakfast. And lunch. And everything in between.