Next in the series on JV Jerky is this Teriyaki Style. See my previous reviews of their Mild and Habanero varieties.
JV Jerky is a brand of JV Jerky, Inc. based out of Lodi, OH. It's actually more well known by locals in the North East Ohio area as part of Mack's Food Center, a fixture in Medina County since 1947 as a combination grocery store, deer processor, and meat locker. Both Mack's Food Center and JV Jerky are owned by John Vanni, the son of the original owners. The company manufacturers its jerky in a smokehouse next to Mack's Food Center, using real hickory wood.
JV Jerky's website describes this Teriyaki Style by saying, "For those of you who crave an oriental taste try our Teriyaki Strips. We blend together rich oriental seasonings for a mild and pleasing marinade. The marinated strips are then slowly smoked to perfection."
Beef, sugar, teriyaki sauce powder, brown sugar, caramel color, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, spices, salt, natural hickory smoke flavoring, sodium nitrite.
The first thing I taste from the surface of these pieces is a smoky flavor mixed with an oily flavor. A few seconds later, a little saltiness comes in.
The chewing flavor starts with a light soy sauce flavor along with a touch of sweetness. There's a light bit of natural meat flavor.
For being marketed as a Teriyaki Style beef jerky, this doesn't really have a teriyaki flavor to it. First, there's no thick sweetness that I typically find in teriyaki sauce, and I'm not getting any of the tangy or pungent overtones that usually result from the sake, mirin wine, and ginger. All that's here to represent the teriyaki flavor is a light sweetness, and a light soy sauce flavor. But both are too light enough for me to get any of the "oriental taste" that JV Jerky mentions in its description, and too light for me to see this as a teriyaki beef jerky.
Otherwise, that light sweet and soy sauce still seem to be the most noticeable flavors in this, even though they don't really strike me as teriyaki. There's also more of a smoky flavor in this compared to the Mild and the Habanero varieties I previously reviewed for JV Jerky. And interestingly enough, this Teriyaki variety includes "natural hickory smoke flavoring" in the ingredients, whereas the Mild and Habanero did not. But, I can actually taste a real wood smoked flavor on the surface of these pieces.
There's a light natural meat flavor that comes in as well, perhaps more light than what I got in the Mild and Habanero varieties, but considering this seems to have a stronger smokiness, the two pair up pretty well to create a good smoked meat flavor. There's also some streaks fat in this that contributes into that.
The level of saltiness in this feels to be at a low level.
I can also pick up light bursts of black pepper here and there.
Overall, this is a very mild tasting jerky, with no spiciness to speak of aside from touches of black pepper. What's you'll notice mostly is the light sweet and light soy sauce, along with a light natural meat flavor with a noticeable smokiness. But marketed as a Teriyaki Style jerky, it just doesn't represent that flavor well enough.
These are slices of whole meat, sliced into strips of varying widths and lengths and in small to medium sized pieces.
This is a dry jerky with a very oily surface. These pieces don't have much flexibility, cracking open with just a little bit of bending. Biting chunks off of these strips seems easy to do, and chewing seems quite easy as well.
The chewing texture starts out feeling soft and tender, with barely any chewing resistance. It breaks down and chews to a soft mass quite easily and quickly, and at that point, feels just like eating a real piece of steak, though a little more dry.
Most of these pieces have some noticeable chunks and streaks of fat on them, but they didn't generate any rubbery chewing like I found with the company's Mild variety. I don't find any streaks of gristle or tendon. I did find a light bit of stringiness, but overall I'm not getting much unchewable wads of tissue.
As for clean eating, these are not. Each handling presents a good deal of oiliness on my fingers, requiring a licking and wiping before touching anything else.
JV Jerky sells this Teriyaki beef jerky from its website at a price of $7.75 for an 8oz package. If you bought four packages, the shipping costs to Southern California works out to $14.16, for a total of $1.42 per ounce.
For general jerky snacking purposes, at the $1.42 price per ounce, it's a good value. I'm getting a fair amount of snackability for an overall satisfactory flavor, easy eating, good chewing texture, though a very oily meat consistency. That price is considerably lower than what you'll spend at the grocery store for major brands of jerky, but provides only a slightly better flavor.
As a Teriyaki beef jerky, at the same $1.42 price per ounce, it's a fair value. I don't really get any kind of a defined teriyaki flavor in this, only a light sweetness and light soy sauce flavor. But it's still priced considerably lower than most other teriyaki jerky brands, so I think there's still some value in it.
I'm giving this an average rating.
This Teriyaki Style from JV Jerky didn't really give me a well-defined teriyaki flavor, at least nothing resembling the flavor I get from most japanese restaurants anyways. But it still offers a light sweetness and light soy sauce.
Otherwise, it's really a light natural meat flavor that I notice in this more than anything else, with a more noticeable smoke flavor than what I found in JV Jerky's Mild and Habanero varieties. It still generates a fair amount of snackability just for those flavors alone along with a good chewing texture and easy eating. It's still pretty oily to handle.
It's also very mild tasting, even more mild than the company's Mild variety, with practically no spiciness to speak of, except for an occasional, but light bursts of black pepper. If you just want a jerky that's sweet and smoky, with some natural meat flavors, and is very gentle on the tongue, this will give that to you.
My recommended beer pairing for this, I'd go with a standard IPA. Try the Stone IPA or the Sierra Nevada Torpedo.
Where to buy: