Globalization may have reduced the number of surprising discoveries one makes in foreign lands, but the art of travel can still lead to exciting finds. The latest example of this is Bay Meats Butcher Shop's gluten-free beef jerky, a delicious snack we came across at a local outpost within the Toronto Pearson airport. Based in a historic Finnish District in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Bay Meats smokes their own meat and uses only the freshest high quality Canadian beef for their jerky. Founder Cindy Salo began producing the healthy snack in 2011 after a decade of conscious eating due to her battle with Crohn’s disease.
The jerky comes in three classic flavors—mild, hot and teriyaki—and one particularly Canadian flavor, maple, which is made with syrup produced nearby on St Joseph's Island. We naturally gravitated toward the local favorite and found the sweetness of the maple to perfectly underline the saltiness of the beef. Each piece is visibly hand-sliced and cut into whole squares instead of dried up bits (you won't find a bunch of over-flavored crumbles at the end of this bag), and since it's preservative-free, the texture has the perfect chewiness.
Clearly a labor of love, Bay Meats' 100% beef jerky sells in shops around Ontario in 60-gram and 120-gram packets for $6 and $10 respectively.
Images by Cool Hunting