Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Appalachian Jerky - Dopey Doug's Hickory Smoked

appalachian jerky coAppalachian Jerky Company is a relatively new player in the meat snacks industry based out of Brighton, MA.

The creation of two college buddies, Ron Myrick and Doug Labb, the boys had been making their own jerky for camping trips and parties. When they decided to take their seasoned meat delicacies to market, they tweaked their original recipe and developed a few more.

In addition to this Dopey Doug's Hickory Smoked, they also have Raging Ron's Hot, Daisy's Sweet & Hot, and Dopey Doug's Garlic Teriyaki.

Ingredients

Beef, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, flavorings, mustard powder, red pepper.

Taste

The first thing I taste from the surface of these pieces is a light saltiness, and maybe a touch of smokiness. There's a light bit of soy sauce that comes in later.

The chewing flavor starts with an increased saltiness which seems to segue into a soy sauce flavor.

For being dubbed, "Dopey Doug's Hickory Smoked", I don't really pick up much of any smokiness, except just a faint touch off the surface flavors.

Instead, the flavor that seems to define this jerky is the soy sauce, along with its associated saltiness. I can maybe pick up a slight touch of the worcestershire that was mentioned in the ingredients, but honestly, this mostly has a flavor of soy sauce.

I don't really pick up any natural meat flavors in this, aside from some light touches of fat on a few pieces, which tended to give off a stale flavor.

As for the level of saltiness in this jerky, it's tastes at a medium-high intensity.

Overall, what you're going to taste in this jerky is a soy sauce flavor and little else, perhaps some light touches of fat flavor on a few pieces, and maybe a faint bit of smokiness on the surface.

Meat Consistency

These are slices of whole meat, sliced thin, and in small bite sized pieces, with about half the pieces being very small.

This is a dry jerky with a dry surface feel. They have a pliable, soft plastic-like flexibility. Chewing seems to be chewy, but not tough, still somewhat easy.

The chewing texture starts out feeling like soft, pliable plastic with a fair amount of chewing resistance. With some chews it finally breaks apart and then quickly chews down to a soft mass. At that point it feels very much like real meat, and rather steak-like.

Some pieces have small bits of fat on them, but I didn't encounter any gristle or tendon. Because these pieces are cut into small and very small pieces, I don't really pick up any stringiness and found no unchewable wads of tissue.

In terms of clean eating, it's very clean with no residue on my fingertips and no bits of meat fragments falling on my lap, also due to the bite-sized pieces.

hickory smoked jerky

hickory beef jerky
Snack Value

Appalachian Jerky sells this Dopey Doug's Hickory Smoked jerky at a price of $24.00 for eight (8) 1.75 ounce packages. Shipping is free for orders of $70.00 or more. If you buy over $70.00 worth, it works out to a price of $1.71 per ounce.

For general jerky snacking purposes, at the $1.71 per ounce price, this jerky offers a fair value. That price is comparable to what you'd pay for major brands of jerky at the grocery store, and seems to offer a similar snackability. It has a satisfying flavor at best, and good meat consistency.

Rating

I'm giving this an average rating.

This Dopey Doug's Hickory Smoked variety from Appalachian Jerky Company has a rather mild flavor, offering up what seems to be only a soy sauce flavor. I don't really pick up the smokiness that it's flavor name suggests.

The bite sized pieces make it convenient to snack, but it seems about half the contents of this packages are very small, to the point where they're like bits, and I need several just to produce a decent chew.

Overall, I couldn't get enough excitement from this to award a four star rating let alone a five star. Albeit, I'm sure this is the company's base flavor. It still generates some snackability and the higher saltiness makes for a great beer companion.

As for a good beer pairing, go with a lighter bodied brown ale, such as the Newcastle Brown Ale or the Moose Drool Brown Ale.

Rating: Average

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