Favorite brand of beef jerky?
I love beef jerky. I just can't stomach $25/lb for Fatted Calf's, since for the price of one of those little cones they sell I can buy a pound of their bacon or over a pound of their sausages.
I've been buying one pound bags of Billy D's for 12.99 at the gas station convenience store near my office. It's sweetened with brown sugar and papaya juice and the only ingredient that looks like a preservative is sodium nitrate. It's made in Brazil and it's good. Meaty, chewy but not tough, slightly dry and flaky. It's as good as the jerky of my youth.
Not a brand, but you are in my nabe, more or less, get carne seca from any Mexican carneceria. OK, some are better than others, but when it is good, it is mind-blowing good and it runs about $12 bucks a pound, if that.
There is the deep beefiness that I've never tasted in any jerky and some are marinated in lime. So good, so good. No chemicals, no preservatives. Here's the best I've tried to date:
On the cheap side, try Jack Links kippered beef. It is similar to jerky but less dry and a bit thicker.