Next in the series on Jerky Hut is this Sweet with Habanero variety. See my previous reviews of their other flavors.
Jerky Hut is a brand of Jerky Hut International, Inc., based out of Hubbard, OR. The brand which is often seen at boat shows, gun shows, car shows, and trade shows of every kind, was started over 30 years ago by Steve Risch. The company makes jerky from its own USDA inspected facility under its parent company, Saddle Mountain Meats.
This Chernobyl is described by the company as, "Jerky Hut prime cut, thick beef jerky. This little princess is hot! (That's because we added some habanero chiles to the mix.) If you like your jerky a little on the spicy side, this one is "too-good" to pass up! This is our Golden Nugget with a single serving of habanero!"
Beef, brown sugar, water, crushed red pepper, seasonings, cayenne pepper, habanero pepper, liquid smoke flavoring, garlic powder, monosodium glutamate, black pepper, sodium nitrite
The first thing I taste from the surface of these pieces is a lot of sweet, with a light touch of smokiness mixed in. There's a moderate amount of heat building up.
The chewing flavor starts with an increased smokiness and sweetness. There's a light touch of chile pepper flavor, while the heat continues to build up to a higher level.
For being marketed as "Sweet with Habanero", it seems to fit the bill. I'm getting a lot of sweetness, along with a light bit of chile pepper flavor. But I do get a lot of heat, along with a rush of endorphins. On my heat scale, I'd rank this as medium hot (level 4 out 5).
The flavor(s) that seem to define this jerky, however, is the thick sweetness with that light smokiness mixed in. The chile pepper flavor is more of a light touch, just enough to identify.
There's a light saltiness to this, but not normally noticeable unless I stop to look for it. The black pepper and garlic powder are not very noticeable either.
I'm not picking up any natural meat flavor.
Overall, what you're going to notice in this is mostly a thick sweet flavor with a light smokiness. You'll also identify a light chile pepper flavor, and a lot of heat.
These are slices of whole meat, sliced thick and in strips of varying between three to six inches.
This is a dry jerky but with a very oily surface feel. They have a lot of flexibility being able to bend all the way back on themselves with little cracking. Biting off chunks from these strips seems mostly easy, maybe a little bit of effort. They present some chewiness, a little labored chewing, but not too bad.
The chewing texture starts out feeling stiff with some initial chewing resistance. But they seem to break down with a bit of chewing effort and then quickly chew down to a soft mass. At that point, it has a steak-like chewing texture, but a touch on the crumbly side.
I didn't notice any bits of fat on these strips, nor any gristle or tendon. There's just a little bit of stringiness, but no unchewable tissues in this. It feels pretty much meaty.
As for clean eating, it's not. My fingers pick up a fair amount of oil, requiring a finger licking and wiping before touching my keyboard.
YummyJerky sells this Sweet with Habanero beef jerky from its website at a price of $10.00 for a 4oz package. If you bought four packages, shipping to Southern California would be $6.95, totalling $46.95. That works out to a price of $2.93 per ounce.
For general jerky snacking purposes, at the $2.93 per ounce price, it seems to be a fair value. I'm getting a decent snackability mostly for its meaty, steak-like chewing, and somewhat easy eating, despite what is mostly a thick sweet flavor. Compared to major brands of jerky found in grocery stores, it's priced a lot higher though produces a comparable snackability.
As a "Sweet with Habanero" variety of beef jerky, at the same $2.93 per ounce price, it's decent value. I do get a lot of sweet flavor, and a lot of heat, though only little bits of chile pepper flavor. It's still more heat than what you'd get from similarly labeled jerky from the major brands.
I'm giving this an average rating.
This Sweet with Habanero variety of beef jerky from Jerky Hut definitely provides a lot of sweetness for those folks who like sweet jerky, and it does generate a good deal of heat for something marketed with the word "habanero". But it doesn't provide much of that unique habanero flavor.
Otherwise, there's a bit of a bland character to this jerky's flavor, being mostly sweet. The light touches of smokiness and what faint amounts of chile pepper flavor are just not enough to create anything beyond ordinary.
If anything, it has a good meat consistency and chewing texture, if you don't mind getting your fingers oily.
My recommended beer pairing for this, go with a dark lager, such as a Negra Modelo or an Asahi Dark.
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