This will be our first review on Stemmler Meats. Kevin Stemmler graciously submitted their jerky for review, giving Stemmler Meats the distinction of being the first Canadian jerky maker to submit jerky for review here at Jerky Ingredients. This review will focus on a 1.5 ounce/42 gram bag of their teriyaki flavor.
Stemmler Meats is located in Heidelberg, Ontario, which is near the Waterloo area. This jerky is manufactured and distributed under the same name, Stemmler Meats. Their business started in 1985 by the founders Gerard and Maryanne Stemmler. Today, they have a store three times the size. This truly is a family run store, with Maryanne and Gerard still involved, while their three sons Kevin, Shawn, and Terry run daily operations.
Ingredients: Beef, Water, Corn Syrup, Sugar, Soy Sauce (Water, Soybeans, Wheat, Salt), Lemon Juice Concentrate, Salt, Spices, Garlic, Modified Corn Starch, Dextrose, Sodium Erythorbate, Sodium Nitrite, Maple Smoke. Allergen Warnings: Soy, Wheat
Stemmler Meats sources all of their beef from local farms in Ontario. All the cattle used is ethically raised, meaning the cows are not given any growth hormones, and no additional antibiotics. The cattle also have free range access, meaning they get to graze on grass as part of their natural diet, the way it has been done for thousands of years.
Easily the most interesting ingredient in this list is lemon juice concentrate, where concentrate means that all the water content has been removed. Lemons are a fantastically healthy fruit that provide a multitude of health benefits. Also, another favorite used is fresh garlic.
Somewhat disappointing is that corn syrup is third on the ingredient list by weight. Also in the ingredient list is modified corn starch. As a general rule, we would rather not see any corn products in jerky.
The sugar level used here is quite reasonable for a sweet based teriyaki flavor, with only 2 grams of sugar per 28 grams of jerky. The salt level is quite high at 430mg of salt per 28 grams of jerky. Our preference is 350mg of salt or less.
Unfortunately this jerky uses both sodium erythorbate and sodium nitrite as preservatives. Kevin assures us that the erythorbate quantity is minuscule, a couple of parts per million, all for consumer safety of course. This jerky does qualify to have no MSG added.
Decent (7/10) – Ingredient Rating
For the most part, these jerky strips are sliced somewhat large, to medium in size. The thickness is definitely thin. These strips have a dry texture, but not too dry. There are no signs of fat to be seen anywhere. Handling this jerky does leave a slightly oily residue on your fingers.
The first taste picked up is the sweetness, which levels off at a moderate level. The soy taste quickly sets in, as does the smoked flavor when you chew more strips. While faint, there is a light garlic flavor. As you eat more slices of jerky, the natural beef flavor sets in at about a medium level. The most interesting taste in this jerky comes from the tanginess of the lemon juice concentrate. While this jerky misses on a traditional teriyaki flavor, it is enjoyable.
You can purchase a 3 ounce/85 gram bag for $5.99 at Stemmler Meats. That works out to $2.00 an ounce, which would rate as an average price. This jerky is recommended as worth your money.
Very Good (9/10) – Taste Rating
We have a non-resealable, transparent bag here. There is a label affixed to both the front and back of this bag. Something you do not see often on a transparent bag, the Stemmler Meats logo is printed on the plastic, along with an Ontario Department of Agriculture stamp. The best feature of this bag is it being vacuum sealed.
Slogans printed on this bag are “Only the Best from our Family to Yours” est. 1985, and “European Style – Imported Cheeses – Quality Meats”.
The vast majority of bag categories are covered here. Missing is the jerky weight stated in grams, and slits to make this bag easy to open. As a required law in Canada, French translations are needed. Perhaps somewhat surprising for a small meat store, there is a QR Code that provides a URL to the Stemmler Meats web site.
Check out their web site: www.stemmlermeats.ca
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