Welcome to the travel edition of Mantou Joe, where I eat snacks and other foods I normally wouldn't bother spending money on otherwise. $5.99 for a pack of jerky isn't TERRIBLE but boy the damage I can do with $6 at Trader Joe's. Just sayin.
And in any event, $5.99 for a protein-packed snack is a bargain compared to what you'll find at an airport. Or along the Pacific Coast Highway. Which is almost nothing except virtually dead vegetation on one side and gorgeous jewel-toned ocean on the other.
This product comes recommended by my cashier from the La Brea Trader Joe's. He seemed to know a thing or two about jerky. For some reason, I thought this buffalo jerky would be more like a buffalo-flavored jerky, a la buffalo wings, but it is made from actual buffalo. Can't comment on the authenticity because I can't remember the last time I had buffalo. It just tasted like meat. Jerky meat. *shrug*
The flavor was exactly how the cashier described it - sweet yet savory with a kick of spice that hits you at the end. A expressed ambivalence toward this jerky, mainly because he can't stand a repeated assault from the spice. The spice is interesting, but if you eat this continuously without rest in between pieces, the sweetness gets lost. It's a similar sensation to eating the sriracha chips. After a while of continuous snacking (aka the stuff-yer-face method), the spice numbs your mouth and you can't taste much anymore. Especially if you can't eat spicy. Like A. But I like spicy, so I thought it was okay. Plus, it wasn't spicy enough for me to be gasping for water.
Repurchase verdict? Probably. Not overly salty. Something different from the teriyaki or original flavor. Travels well. Edible while driving.
TL;DR: Trader Joe's Natural Buffalo Jerky. Travel-friendly buffalo meat. A bit of sweet and a pinch of spice for a nice savory snack. 6.5 out of 10.