Back in 2002, husband and wife Ray and Nina-Maria Cattaneo opened up a USDA facility from scratch. Ray handled the beef jerky aspect of the production process, and Nina-Marie was tasked with sales. This Ray’s Own Brand of jerky was officially launched in 2003. Within five years of very hard work and effort, sales were robust with Ray’s Own Brand being sold in countless stores. Ray’s Own Brand has since teamed up with several international brands who are taking their jerky all over the world.
Ray’s Own Brand all hand sliced jerky is advertised as sugar free, has no added nitrates, MSG free, gluten-free, preservative free, and made with sea salt. Ray’s Own Brand has an adorable gift shop on the property with their USDA building, and lots of animals for the kids to enjoy! This is the true Steak N A Bag!! Ray Cattaneo’s style! Ray’s Own Brand is distributed under the same name of Ray’s Own Brand, and they are based out of San Luis Obispo, California.
The next review on Ray’s Own Brand will focus on a 4 ounce/113 gram bag of their original flavored beef jerky. This flavor is described as being mildly seasoned to allow the delicious taste of the California beef to come through. The bag was graciously submitted for review by co-owner Nina-Marie Cattaneo.
The cattle used are confirmed to have about 85% free range access to graze on grass, and roam about. Based on the information provided from the fine folks at Harris Ranch, the cattle qualify enough to be ethically raised. As a result, the highest ingredient rating that can be awarded is a Very Good (9/10) rating.
Admirably, there is no sugar added. The salt level is somewhat high at 450mg of salt per 28 grams of jerky. However, the salt level is ignored because healthy minimally processed sea salt is used as opposed to heavily processed table salt.
This jerky is confirmed as having no sodium nitrite, or any other similar unhealthy preservatives. Instead, sea salt is the main preservative, and apple cider vinegar to a lesser degree. Celery powder is also used as a preservative with its naturally occurring nitrates. Commendably, this jerky has no MSG added.
Written by guest jerky reviewer Paul Rekker
When I open the bag, I smell natural beef. The jerky is medium in size, but it is sliced quite thick. The jerky is soft and dry, and a bit of a challenge to chew. There is no oily residue left on your fingers handling this jerky.
Wow, this jerky is tasty. This is how our forefathers intended jerky to be. Instant ‘wow’ factor, and then some. I taste salt, pepper, garlic, onion, vinegar and all the natural beef a carnivore can handle.
Now folks, this is straight up unadulterated pure natural beef jerky. While I enjoy many various different flavors of beef jerky, this is as original as original gets. Every time I take a bite, I hear a “moo’, some cow somewhere sacrificed himself so we meat eaters can have our various forms of a smorgasbord, in this case original beef jerky.
Gentlemen, how high can you raise your thumbs. Put ‘em both way up high for this spectacular flavor of jerky. Two thumbs way, way, way up, a 10/10, and then some Ray, take a bow…👍👍
Here is what Stéphane had to say about this flavor: “I couldn’t agree more with Paul. This jerky is pure bliss; it doesn’t get much better than this. The aroma is sublime and the texture is way awesome, it’s a beautiful prelude to what comes next. A lot of great flavors here and they all complement the natural beef flavor without ever distracting from the star of the show.”
Here is what Mark had to say about this original beef jerky flavor from Ray’s Own Brand: “Thanks Paul and Stéphane. I totally agree, this jerky was like crack to me. I loved, loved, LOVED this flavor. I just could not get enough, and struggled to save some for the Group of Seven, which required incredible constraint. A true Steak in a Bag!”
“This jerky was shared between 11 people in total. Apart from Sid and Mark M. finding the flavor to be somewhat bland tasting, this original flavor got great feedback. Some of the people who tried this jerky inserted personal biases into their taste ratings such as being too chewy, or too dry. There is nothing wrong with having a thick cut style, and the texture is masterfully consistent.”
“Here are the official ratings between the Group of Seven (Mark – 10, Paul – 10, Stéphane – 10, Nolan – 9, Mark M. – 8, Sid – 8, Ava – 8). Irrespective of the overall feedback, Ray’s Own Brand is going to receive another well-deserved Excellent (10/10) taste rating, where this recently created Group of Seven in April is still a work in progress.”
This non-resealable plastic bag has a label affixed to the front, and nothing on the back.
A slogan printed on this bag is “Ray’s Hand Cut, All Natural”. Some facts printed on this bag are “High Protein”, “No MSG, Gluten and No Sugar Added”, “No Nitrates or Nitrites added except those naturally occurring in Sea Salt & Celery Powder”, “Minimally Processed, No Artificial Ingredients”, and “Our Beef Is Raised, Harvested & Processed in the U.S.A.”.
The only bag categories missing are the plastic bag being not being resealable, and no blurb printed about Ray’s Own Brand, or this original flavor. To the credit of Ray’s Own Brand, a toll free phone number is provided for customer inquiries.
The 4 ounce/113 gram original flavored bag from Ray’s Own Brand listed at the bottom was purchased in Oxnard, California back in 2010. The bag design has since changed, and sodium nitrite has been replaced with celery powder.
Order their jerky online: www.raysownbrand.com