Every couple of months my wife and I hit the road to Las Vegas, and along the way I always make a stop at the Alien Fresh Jerky store in Baker, CA.
For one, it's a entertaining place to visit with the space alien theme, the alien exhibits, the alien t-shirts and the hilarious rack of comical hot sauces. But I also like to check what they have new in jerky flavors, and it seems every time I'm there I find something I hadn't seen before. Such is the case with this Galactic Garlic with Rosemary beef jerky.
Read my previous reviews of Alien's other flavors.
You often hear stories of dead cattle being found in pastures with all their insides removed but their hides intact, and you wonder what the heck happened? Well it seems little green men from outerspace have developed a technology for making beef jerky. Nuking planets all over the Universe requires a lot of protein, and after perfecting their recipe they decided to turn it into a business.
Beef, water, corn syrup, granulated garlic seasoning (salt, sugar, brown sugar, maple sugar, sodium nitrite), brown sugar, vinegar, rosemary, liquid smoke, sodium nitrite.
The first thing I taste from the surface of these pieces is a light sweetness, and then soon followed by a light saltiness. A wee bit of garlic is noticeable.
The chewing flavor starts with an easily noticeable rosemary flavor, along with a stronger garlic flavor. The saltiness seems to be slightly increased.
For being labeled as "Galactic Garlic with Rosemary", this jerky definitely does live up to that billing. I can easily recognize the rosemary and garlic in this, both having strong flavors. The rosemary seems to be noticeable first with the garlic coming in quickly after.
In fact, those two are the dominant flavors in this jerky. However a couple of the strips were more dry than the others and offered less flavor, while the more moist pieces were brimming with garlic and rosemary.
There's a light bit of sweetness to this which is quite unlike much of Alien Fresh Jerky, being most of their flavors are thick with sweet.
I'm not able to pick up any natural meat flavors, and I can't seem to detect the liquid smoke flavor.
The level of saltiness in this seems to be at a light amount.
What you're going to notice in this jerky is largely a strong rosemary and garlic, and then a light saltiness and a touch of sweet.
These are slices of whole meat, sliced to a medium thickness, and in medium to large slabs.
This is a dry jerky with a dry, though slightly sticky, surface feel. These slabs do not have much flexibility in that any amount of bending causes them to crack apart. I find that biting off chunks can take some muscle to do, while chewing seems to similarly laborious.
The chewing texture is varied. The more dry slabs tend to start out feeling hard and brittle and require a good deal of chewing and sucking before it softens up and chews down to a soft mass. The more moist pieces are comparable, but a little less hard though still rather chewy. Both start out with a lot of chewing resistance, both make my jaws tired. And when chewed down to a soft mass, both seem to feel a little crumbly, more so with the drier slabs, but still have a meaty, steak-like texture.
I don't find any visible signs of fat, nor tendon or gristle. But I did encounter a fair amount of stringiness, and just minimal amounts of unchewable wads of tissue.
In terms of clean eating, it seems to be mostly clean. My fingertips don't pick up much residue, while ripping slabs apart doesn't seem to produce much fragments of meat flying all over.
Alien Fresh Jerky sells this Galactic Garlic with Rosemary at a price of $8.00 for a 4oz package. They offer a bulk price of $20.00 if you buy three bags (of any flavor). I always buy three bags when I visit them, which works to a price of $1.67 per ounce.
If you purchase this online, the shipping comes to $4.95 for the same above order, which works out to $2.08 per ounce.
For general jerky snacking purposes at the $2.08 per ounce price, it's a weak value. I'm getting only a little bit of snackability for a decent flavor, but a tough meat consistency. I can get comparable or better flavor from one of the major brands of jerky, but with a softer meat consistency at a slightly lower price per ounce.
As a garlic & rosemary flavored jerky, at the same $2.08 per ounce price, it's a decent value. I'm getting a lot of garlic & rosemary flavor, and if that's all that you're looking for, that price is hard to beat. But it's still a tough jerky.
I'm giving this a fair rating.
This Galactic Garlic with Rosemary from Alien Fresh Jerky does in fact deliver on a strong garlic and rosemary flavor but doesn't seem to offer much else. I only get a light saltiness and a touch of sweet otherwise, with no natural meat flavors, and no noticeable smokiness.
The toughness of this meat seems to divert my attention away from the garlic & rosemary flavors. I find it hard enough and tough enough that I lose sight of this jerky's taste. If it had more flavor and better flavor, it might be worth the labor to get to it, but as it is this is a lot of work for a less than stellar flavor.
My recommended beer pairing for this, the smoky malt flavor of a porter should do well to emphasize the garlic & rosemary flavor of this jerky. Try to Stone Smoked Porter or the Anchor Porter.
Buy this online:
Note: I notice this Galactic Garlic with Rosemary is not actually on Alien's website, perhaps you can call them and place an order.