Geronimo Jerky is a small Brisbane based company that produce beef jerky. At the helm is The Big Chief aka Mark Hoyle, who moved to Australia from the USA 20 years ago, bringing with him an authentic native American family recipe for jerky.
Their slogan is, “The best beef jerky you’ve ever tasted” it is a pretty big claim to make, so does Geronimo’s jerky live up to the claim?
I have been buying their jerky for a while now and they occasionally have great sales. Recently they had a 50% off the 40g bags, so I ordered twenty. I got a few of each flavour that they have, some more than others. I thought it would be a great opportunity to review all of their jerky.
I am by no means a jerky expert but when I stayed in the US for a few months working, I took advantage of the opportunity to try as much beef jerky as I could. Understandably jerky is big business in the United States and there are a lot of varieties to choose from. I tried a lot of great jerky, some mediocre, but I sampled what smaller jerky companies could offer.
It is worth mentioning all of Geronimo’s jerky has no preservatives, no colours or anything you can’t find in your own kitchen. The ingredients read like a shopping list, hence the slightly lower shelf life of around 3 months compared to other offerings with a shelf life of double and sometimes triple that of Geronimos.
All jerky flavours also use the original flavoured jerky as the flavour base and add on top of it. As most jerky connoisseurs know, a great jerky base is essential.
One of the only downsides I found to be quite consistent is the jerky is quite hard. It is hardly a deal breaker once you soften up the meat, but those initial bites can be quite hard. I would equate eating a piece of Geronimo Jerky to a nicely flavoured well-done cooked steak.
Geronimo Original Jerky
The original variant of the jerky has this lovely soy taste to it, but it isn’t overly salty. The ingredients list soy beans, so I wonder if perhaps instead of just using soy sauce, they’re doing something else with the soybeans themselves? It would explain the lack of dominating salt taste. The meat has a nice natural flavour and slightly marbled akin to a delicious steak.
Geronimo Pow Wow
The Pow Wow to me had a very similar taste to that of the original. Although I could taste hints of teriyaki sauce and brown sugar, they didn’t dominate the flavour profile of the meat. It was more of an after taste that hits you after a few chews.
The package lists this as a flavour for the kids, but my fiance actually loved this one and I thought it was delicious as well. I found Pow Wow to be the most binge-eat worthy jerky because it has no heat and it makes your mouth water when you chew it.
Geronimo Spicy Sharman
Even though the name might confuse some, this isn’t a hot jerky at all. People often confuse spicy with hot, this is a subtly sweet jerky that is super delicious and has hints of ginger and the curry gives it a distinctive spicy taste that makes this one easily one of Geronimo’s most tasty jerkies.
This is an interesting jerky. To me it tastes like the original, but has a few subtle spice notes in it. The most interesting ingredient in this is the inclusion of Guarana which is added in during the marinating phase.
This is the first jerky to use Guarana as an ingredient and while I can’t say for sure if it made me feel more alert, the concept of an energy jerky is pretty interesting nonetheless.
I think the Guarana is more of a gimmick than anything. If I want a pick-me-up, a large coffee is considerably cheaper and probably more effective.
Geronimo’s Buckshot jerky is easily my favourite variant of their jerky. It is basically the original jerky with heavy hints of peppercorn, you can actually see the pepper if you look in the bag.
Absolutely delicious and hard to not binge eat. There is nothing complicated here, just the right amount of pepper and the delicious jerky base.
The Sidewinder jerky has a slightly bit of heat to it. If you can’t handle a bit of heat courtesy of the Chocolate Habanero chilli which comes in between 425,000 – 577,000 Scoville heat units, then you might want to avoid this one. Although in its defence, it isn’t as hot as you would think.
The package does however say “it’s not too hot” but this would be out of the comfort zone for many. I found the heat of Sidewinder to not be overly consistent, some pieces were barely hot and some pieces were very hot.
The Sidewinder has a very unique taste, a slight sweetness which comes from the Habanero Chilli which has a slight passion fruit flavour and subtle hints of capsicum.
Geronimo Blazin’ Saddle
From my understanding Blazin’ Saddle is supposed to be the second hottest jerky that Geronimo produce, but I honestly found my bags of Sidewinder were consistently hotter than Blazin’ Saddle.
Perhaps it was just the batch that I received, but my Blazin’ Saddle (even though the ingredients had a few hot ingredients) wasn’t overly hot.
The lack of heat was a bit disappointing, but it was still delicious though. The lack of sweetness because of different chillies being used is a nice change from the Sidewinder.
Geronimo Flamin’ Arrow
This is Geronimo’s hottest jerky and unlike Blazin’ Saddle, this one lives up to its tagline of being their hottest jerky. The heat is considerably hotter than that of any of Geronimo’s other jerkies, I found it a little hard to pinpoint certain ingredients in this one. Make no mistake this is a delicious jerky.
But be careful, they’re not exaggerating when they say this is hot. Seriously, wash your hands after eating this. If you touch your eyes or nose, you’ll be in a world of pain temporarily as it is like rubbing chilli in your eyes (don’t ask me how I know this).
Flamin’ Arrow is not a binge jerky. I recommend you eat this one in moderation or you’ll experience first hand what Johnny Cash was really singing about.
So, does Geronimo Jerky back up the claim of “The best beef jerky you’ve ever tasted”? Absolutely. Even though at times I did find the jerky was a bit too hard to chew, this is just because I have sensitive teeth. Geronimo Jerky is perfect and much better than anything I have tasted from any other Australian jerky producer.
Properly cooked jerky is supposed to crack when you bend it, not break. Geronimo’s jerky consistently cracked when I bent pieces randomly from the whole flavour range.
Combined with the excellent range of flavours and balanced ingredient ratios, you can see why Geronimo win the awards they do and are making waves in the jerky community in Australia and abroad.
The things I would do to get my hands on the Geronimo jerky base. Go and buy some Geronimo Jerky now and thank me later.