Mike's Jerky is based out of Albuquerque, NM, owned and operated by Mike Grier. It's a New Mexico Style of jerky where its sliced thin, dried crisp, and crunches when you bite into it, yet still chewing like real meat.
This Christmas beef jerky is named as such because in New Mexico, people are often asked to choose between red or green chiles. When they want both, they answer with, "Christmas". And that's supposedly what this beef jerky is about.
Beef, Green Christmas Roast Chile, salt, modifed corn starch, garlic, sugar, parsley, extractives of garlic and carrot.
The first thing I taste is the roast chiles, followed by a light roast beef flavor, and a faint garlic salt. The chewing brings on more of the roast beef flavor, with a bit more salt and more of the roast chiles. There's a light bit of heat building up.
For being labeled, "Christmas", it seems to hold up well, considering I get a good dose of the roasted chile flavor, along with plenty of chile pieces stuck to the meat. While I can't say if this jerky is festive as Christmas lights or a wintery snow scene, the roasted chiles will definitely warm you up. On my personal heat scale, I'd rate this as "medium" (level 3 out of 5).
Otherwise, the primary taste profile is that of roasted beef, the kind you get sliced thin at a deli counter, but with a good deal of roasted Hatch green chile flavor. Add a light bit of salt and garlic, and that's largely the flavor.
The meat consistency looks great. Thin slabs of top round, lightly marbleized, are dehydrated to a dry crisp. Each bite produces an initial crunch, but chews down soft and feels comparable to deli roast beef. Chewing is very easy, but feels dry.
This Christmas variety from Mike's Jerky is quite impressive with its delivery on roasted green chiles. It has that higher level of heat, more intense flavor, the kind that Hatch chiles are known for. I suppose this jerky might make a great snack on a cold wintery night, and is probably a great gift idea for the meat lover in your life, but it's certainly a year-round snack for its rich chile flavor. I love the extra-thin slices, and the crisp crunch when biting into a Mike's Jerky; it somehow makes snacking more addicting. That marbleized, roasted beef flavor is great, and I also like the ligher salt that Mike goes with. This Christmas variety is probably his best product to date.
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