When I think about states I like to visit just for a good sausage sampling run, several come to mind.
New York – great neighborhood meat markets, many offering their own version of various primarily fresh sausages.
Louisiana – again with the neighborhood stores and meat markets turning out boudin and andouille made from everything from pork to alligator.
Ohio – lots of great polish, slovenian. german, and czech sausages in Ohio
Wisconsin – Brats of course!
Texas – If you’re a sausage fan and you’ve never been to Texas, you need to set some time aside and make the trip. You could spend months visiting smokehouses and local sausage makers of all styles and varieties and still come away wishing you had time to get to that one last place that somebody told you about at what you thought was your final destination. Texans take their sausage seriously.
One thing that Texas does well is Beef sausage and today we are reviewing a Texas staple brand, Kiolbassa Provision Company of San Antonio. Kiolbassa has been in the sausage business for over 60 years and their sausages are readily available throughout Texas.
This is a medium grind lightly smoked beef sausage with cheddar cheese. Kiolbassa retails their sausage both in stores all over Texas and of course online – at $9.95 per package this is priced as a premium sausage but each package is 1.25 pounds so they are packing in a little more sausage then average.
This had a nice beef flavor with just a hint of smoke compared to your typical smoked pork sausage. No fillers or gristle in any of the sausages and the cheddar added a nice if not slightly muted touch to the flavor profile. I find some beef sausages to be a little greasy from time to time but that was not a problem with the Kiolbassa beef and cheddar. The casing on this sausage was thicker then you would normally get from your typical pork sausage also but it is appropriate for the style of sausage and personally I like the extra snap and texture.
I have 3 other varieties from Kiolbassa to sample later but if they hold up to this one, I would say that Kiolbassa provides as fine a product as you will find in your grocery store and it can hold it’s own with many of the fine beef sausages I’ve had at some of the best smokehouses in the state. I expect Texas beef sausage to have a nice dose of black pepper and this did not. That didn’t detract from the overall flavor or the quality of the sausage, it just was different then what I expected in that area.
I would purchase this sausage again and recommend it as a good example of Texas beef sausage.
Ingredients: Beef, water, pasteurized processed cheddar cheese, salt, potassium lactate, flavoring, sugar, garlic, sodium nitrate, sodium diacetate.