Prepacked BBQ Review: Jack Daniel's Pulled Chicken
I'll admit it. Sometimes I'll buy pre-made barbecue meats. I've tried Lloyds. I've tried Curley's. I've tried Tony Roma's. All with mixed results Sometimes, even if it's not the real deal, the "smokey" flavor of these prepackaged meats can be enough to satisfy the itch. Ya know?
I was intrigued to see Jack Daniel's Pulled Chicken join my supermarket's offerings of "authentic" barbeque. I like the Jack Daniel's barbeque sauce that is sold next to the ketchup in the condiment aisle, so I was looking forward to this chicken. To add to its credibility, Jack Daniel's Distillery sponsors what is arguably the most prestigious barbecue contest in the world. Stamping a product with the Jack Daniel's imprimatur implies quality and value.
Jack Daniel's Pulled Chicken comes from the refrigerated section of the store in a plastic, not microwave safe tray and vacuum packed in a thick cryovac bag.
Why isn't the tray microwaveable? I would have been really pissed to discover this if I was making this for lunch at work. I'm all for reduced packaging, but the vacuum packing didn't make this stuff look very appetizing. Maybe ol' Gentleman Jack should consider packaging this in tubes like some of his competitors.
Taking the meat out of the bag didn't help much the appearance much either. My ever lovely, but never shy to offer an opinion, teen age daughter said, "That looks worse than the cat food." "Are you going to eat it?" "Throw it away." "It's disgusting."
Well, if you've ever stored pulled pork or other loose items like chili in vacuum sealed packaging, you know that the process is not kind to the products appearance outside the bag. The meat and sauces are compressed and deformed. Any item like that would need to be worked to be presentable. Dumping the meat into a bowl to be nuked certainly didn't help. I was beginning to wonder if my daughter was right.
A trip in the microwave and a quick stir helped thing immensely. Now this was beginning to look like some good edible "pulled chicken barbecue."
On a roll, it looked better. My appetite was returning. This was not a bad looking sandwich, even if the picture isn't so flattering.
I took my first bite. I was surprised to discover that they don't use the same sauce that is sold in the bottles.
Enough with the tease; how did it taste? Have you ever eaten hot rubber bands coated in a sickeningly sweet tomato based sauce? That pretty much sums it up.
As my daughter predicted, I did wind up throwing this out. I'm glad to report that this is no longer available in my local supermarket. You've been warned.