Saturday, October 25, 2008

Whole Foods Market 365 Organic - Turkey Jerky - Fajita

Whole Foods Market 365 Organic - Turkey Jerky - Fajita365 Organic is the store brand of Whole Foods Market, a national chain of grocery stores that caters to a demographic of consumers who want something healthier and more environmentally conscious.

Well, I use the words "environmentally conscious" only because the company seems to put a lot of focus on that. I suppose if you consider most of the foods they sell are packaged in the same plastic that clogs up landfills and keeps us dependent on petroleum, it really isn't anymore environmentally conscious than the other grocery stores. But perception is reality as they say.

The 365 Organic line of jerky carries the USDA Organic seal. The package goes on to say that this turkey jerky is made from boneless, skinless, breast meat, which itself is a refreshing departure from all the other turkey jerkies filled with bones and skin.

This brand of jerky is made by Intermountain Natural, LLC, the same company that makes jerky for Trader Joes and the Golden Valley Natural brand. From what I've seen with Trader Joes jerky and 365 Organic, the two jerkies are exactly the same.

Ingredients

Organic turkey, fajita seasoning (salt, organic onion, organic garlic, organic spices [organic cumin, organic oregano, organic black pepper, organic cayenne], organic grill flavor), organic cayenne pepper, organic evaporated cane juice, water, organic caramel coloring, natural smoke flavoring.

"organic grill flavor"? WTF?

Taste

The first taste off the surface to hit my tongue is a slight sweetness, followed by a smoky aroma, I can also get a sense of some spices. Moving into the chewing, more of the spices come out, and that's about it.

The recurring theme I've noticed with any jerky made by Intermountain Natural is a good deal of blandness. There never is a lot of taste with their stuff. Maybe my tongue has become lazy, wanting foods that pack in more flavor. The same is true with this "Fajita" variety of turkey jerky.

I can taste a slight bit of the fajita seasonings, but only slight. The flavor just doesn't come out and grab me. That might be ok if this jerky could offer a great deal of the natural turkey flavors, but it doesn't. In fact, I taste no turkey meat flavor in this. I taste no meat flavors at all.

So what we have left is a slight sweetness off the surface, with a slight taste of the fajita seasoning.

I suppose it's not a bad tasting jerky. It still has a fresh taste, but just not much taste to enjoy. Of what fajita seasoning is there, I mostly taste the salt, black pepper, and garlic.

And as for that "organic grill flavor" listed in the ingredients list, I can't taste that either. I went out to my barbecue grill, and stuck my tongue on it to see if it resembled anything in this jerky, and it doesn't. I have a ceramic grill, and it seems to taste charred. Maybe if I had an organic grill it might taste more like this jerky.

Meat Consistency

These appear to slices of whole meat, sliced in medium to thick thickness, and in small to medium sized pieces.

I'd probably consider this a semi-moist jerky. I find it easy to tear apart, and easy to chew. In terms of chewing the way real turkey breast meat chews, it doesn't totally, though it's pretty close. Some of the smaller pieces were a bit mushy, while other pieces had the same dry, fibrous texture you'd expect from turkey breast.

It's a fairly clean jerky, those I find tiny fragments of turkey meat falling from this stuff on my lap.

Otherwise, it seems pretty lean. I found no fat, gristle, tendon, or connective tissue.

Whole Foods Market 365 Organic - Turkey Jerky - Fajita

Whole Foods Market 365 Organic - Turkey Jerky - Fajita
Product Rating

I paid $6.99 for this 3 ounce bag from a Whole Foods Market in Irvine, CA. That works out to a price of $2.33 per ounce, making this an expensive buy.

For general jerky snacking purposes, it's a weak value. For that amount of money, you're not getting a lot of taste. You will, however, get a great meat consistency, and for that reason, plus whatever taste you can squeeze from this, it provides some snackability.

As a fajita seasoned jerky it's also a weak value. I supposed it's true that this is fajita seasoned, and does resemble the seasoning you'd expect with fajitas, but you won't get a lot of its flavor. You'll get more fajita flavor from a couple chicken soft tacos from Taco Bell, and you'll spend less money doing so.

Rating

I'm giving this an average rating.

Again, it doesn't taste bad, it just doesn't have much taste. I wouldn't mind lightly seasoned jerky if I could only taste the natural meat flavors, but then this jerky has no natural meat flavors. All you'll get from this is that slight bit of sweetness off the surface, and a slight amount of fajita seasoning.

It still has some snackability just because it's got a great meat consistency, and because what flavor it does have seems to resemble something you'd expect from eating real fajitas. For that matter, it might make a good snack for doing something else, like watching sports, or driving down a long lonely road.

A good beer with this would be a honey blonde ale.

Rating: Average

Where to buy:
  • Whole Foods Market

3 comments:

  1. I was looking for the top selling national beef jerky bands. Any suggestions?

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  2. Oberto is number 1, Jack Link's is number 2, Bridgford is number 3, and I believe Pemmican is number 4. After that I don't know.

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  3. I have heard of a new turkey jerky coming out. I understand it is organic and wheat free with great flavor, it is noted that turkey is one of the 14 Power Foods from Kansas City. They call it "Pirate Jerky" try it when you can....

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