Sweet Sriracha Uncured Bacon Jerky- Trader Joe’s - Marlton, NJ
There are always trends in food. These day's it's chia seed, quinoa, sriracha and Greek yogurt, what's next? Who knows! It really could be anything. (Maybe artichokes will make a comeback?) Anyway, right now practically every single food company out there is taking advantage of the current sriracha craze. Even though I myself am a fan of the famous Rooster sauce, I'm not obsessed enough to want it as a candy, or a flavored vodka, but jerky? Sounds good to me!
First up, packaging. Right away this item looks very different from the other products I've reviewed from Trader Joe's. This layout is very minimalistic and clean, with a retro feel. I always pick on Trader Joe's designs, because they usually look like they're stuck between time periods, but this is nicely done! The Rosewood typeface is a bit default looking, since it comes with a lot of computers and software these days, but it's usage here works well. This is a cohesive product, and I don't have any suggestions for it. The negative space is nicely used, and the white packaging really stood out in the snack aisle. Keep doing what you're doing Trader Joe's designers.
Once opened, the jerky inside smells sweet, like brown sugar, and smokey, like bacon. Alongside the smokey sweet meaty aroma there's this tangy, almost vinegar-y kick that can only come from hot sauce. Judging by the scent alone, this is going to be good.
I reached into the bag and grabbed a piece of jerky. Now, all jerky tends to be a little bit greasy, and this is no exception. This stuff was pretty messy, and not too snacking-on-the-go friendly. The pieces themselves has a sticky, but gritty, glaze to them that caused all my jerky to stick together. I reached in hoping for one piece, and I got the whole package. It's easy enough to separate, but my hands did get messy and some of the coating got under my nails. This wasn't really an issue for me, I could just wash my hands, but if I were attempting to eat this on the go, like in a car or at my desk at work, I would want to have wet naps or something on hand.
Okay, time to see if this tastes as good as it smells. I took a bite, and the first sensation was a gritty brown-sugar-like crust on the outside. The grittiness makes this feel more like a candied bacon than a jerky, but I see that as a plus. After a few seconds that sweetness mixes with the salty smoked bacon, with a hit of peppercorn, and a decent amount of spice. This stuff is no gimmick. All of the flavors work so well together that it's completely addicting. It tastes like a premium product you could buy at fancy upscale food places like Williams-Sonoma, but the price is still pretty good for the amount of product you're getting.
As for the heat, it isn't enough to make me reach for a glass of water, but my tolerance has built up over the years. I know that my mother would never enjoy this and it would set her mouth on fire, but she's very sensitive to spices and those sort of things. But if you're not a fan of spicy food, I doubt you'd be buying anything sriracha in the first place. I think this is a fantastic product! It follows foodie trends, but it's not a marketing ploy. (Well maybe it is, but it's a really tasty one!) If you like sweet and spicy things, like sweet chili sauce, you should definitely check this out. I'm really loving this stuff and I will be sad when it's gone.
© Maria Smith http://poison-and-antidote.net
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