Jeff's Famous Jerky recently launched a line of Bacon Jerky, with their latest flavor being this Sweet Lemon Pepper. See the previous review of his Honey Jalapeno Bacon Jerky.
Jeff's Famous Jerky is led by Jeff Richards of Mission Viejo, CA. Jeff has been making beef jerky since the 1970s. His love for cooking took him into the restaurant business for over 20 years. In 2006 he started working on creating his own beef jerky brand, and just last year saw the launch of his new company.
This Sweet Lemon Pepper Bacon Jerky is described as having been 5-years in the making, said to be crisp like real bacon but without all the grease.
Bacon, white sugar, powdered sugar, water, lemon flavor, lemon juice, black pepper.
The first thing I taste from the surface of these pieces is a heavy sweetness, followed up by a bacon flavor. A light saltiness comes in following.
The chewing brings in the full, rich flavor of bacon. I can pick up a light touch of black pepper.
For being marketed as "Sweet Lemon Pepper", it's holds up somewhat. I do get lots of sweetness, and I do get a light black pepper flavor. But there's only faint traces of lemon to taste. Here and there, it tends to make itself more known, but otherwise seems elusive.
The flavor that defines this jerky the most is the heavy, thick sweetness. The bacon flavor actually plays backup to the more dominant sugar. The touch of black pepper comes next, though it struggles to rise above the overpowering sweet.
The bacon flavor itself is the same classic, good ol' American style bacon that we've come to worship in the USA. It doesn't have all the greasiness to it, it's a little more of a cleaner flavor.
There's just enough black pepper in this to generate a tiny bit of heat. I'd still rank this as "mild" (level 1 out of 5) on my personal heat scale, but I thought I'd mention for anyone who can't stand any amount of spiciness.
The level of saltiness in this seems to be on par with standard bacon.
These are strips of whole bacon, sliced to the same length and thickness of standard breakfast-style bacon.
It's mostly semi-moist, very much like fried bacon that has cooled, and has a light oily surface feel. It appears to be cooked half-way between crispy and soft. Chewing seems pretty easy.
The chewing texture starts out feeling just like biting off a strip of bacon, and chews just like one too, having a light bit of crisp when biting off a piece. The heavy layer of sugar on this, however, can be felt in the chewing. The fat tends to chew down pretty quickly while the meat has the same chewiness of real bacon, no more or no less chewy just because it's sold as jerky.
The amount of fat versus meat seems exactly the same as regular bacon. I don't find any extra stringiness beyond what I'd expect from bacon.
In terms of clean eating, my fingers pick up a good deal of granulated sugar, requiring a licking and wiping before touching the keyboard.
Jeff's Famous Jerky sells this Sweet Lemon Pepper Bacon Jerky from it's website at a price of $20.95 for three 2oz bags plus $6.95 for fast Priority Mail shipping and handling. All purchases are shipped the same or next business day. That works out to a price of $4.65 per ounce.
For general jerky snacking purposes, at the $4.65 per ounce price, it's a decent value. I get a lot of snackability for a overall good flavor, good meat consistency and good chewing texture. That price is comparably priced to other gourmet brands of bacon jerky, and seems to offers a better overall bacon flavor.
As for a Sweet Lemon Pepper Bacon Jerky, at the same $4.65 per ounce, it's a fair value. I get a heavy dose of sweet with a touches of black pepper, but barely any lemon, maybe just a smidgeon.
This Sweet Lemon Pepper Bacon Jerky from Jeff's Famous Jerky dishes out a ton of sweetness, with a touch of black pepper and faint bits of lemon.
As a bacon jerky, it's awesome. This is just straight up slices of American-style bacon, with all the great flavor of bacon, but dried enough to eat as a snack. It even has a great chewing texture, offering a balance between crispy and soft bacon.
But this particular Sweet Lemon Pepper variety seemed exceptionally sugary, and perhaps made it difficult for the lemon pepper seasoning to come through. There's a light enough black pepper going on, but the lemon is hard to pick up.
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