25 July, 2012

Review: Jack Link Teriyaki Beef Steak

Up in Maine, there's a chain of job lot stores called Marden's. They are old-school job lotters, buying up stray pallets of merchandise, bankruptcies, close-outs, salvage lots, and so on. That's what makes them so awesome - they approach the odd lot market the way these kinds of stores did fifty years ago, so they manage not to have the same old manufactured-for-the-dollar-market stuff that everyone else has. No, Marden's carries the true odd lot stuff that only comes from purchasing a boxcar full of merchandise originally destined for a bankrupt department store. I love the place, and I never go to Maine without making it a point to spend some time rummaging through the shelves at whatever Marden's is closest to my destination.

By now, you're wondering what any of this has to do with a blog post that is supposed to be a review of Jack Link Teriyaki Beef Steak. Well, I was up on the south coast of Maine last Friday, and the Marden's in Biddeford had these Jack Link Teriyaki Beef Steaks on sale, two for a dollar.  

So I sprung for a couple of Beef Steaks. As much as I love beef jerky, these "steak" things are never as good as jerky, and I knew this experiment was not going to end well.

I knew I was in trouble as soon as I unwrapped it and found that the only way to really tell where the plastic coating ended and the Beef Steak began was by the lurid red color of the...um, what should I call this stuff? Meat?

Got to admit, it wasn't a nasty tube of grease the way some cheap meat meat snacks are. It smelled like pretty authentic teriyaki beef. It even kind of tasted like authentic teriyaki beef. But the texture totally lost me. It was amazingly like a Twizzler, except salty and loaded with uneven lumps of what Jack Link assures me  originated somewhere on the body of a cow.

It was a cheap snack and luckily we were on our way to Portland when we stopped, so I was able to wash the cheap teriyaki flavor out of my mouth with a dozen oysters and an IPA at J's.

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