Guarana Enhanced Beef Jerky

Performance Enhancing Meat Snack Company founders Brian Levin and Matt Keiserwere riding the chairlift towards a day of skiing when they discovered that their breakfast package of beef jerky had been soaked with energy drinks spilled during the previous night’s revelry.  Undeterred, the pair consumed the dried beef anyway, and soon realized that the caffeinated liquid had added both an undeniable boost and appealing tenderness to the bark-like strips. Perky Jerky had been born…

“A true story,” Levin assured me over the phone. “That was the inspiration, anyway.”  Levin and Keiser, who met as undergrads at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, realized they “wanted to make a cool and special product” and spent four years perfecting the recipe for Perky Jerky.  “We marinate the beef in eight ingredients, one of which is guarana, a sort of Brazilian fruit cousin of the coffee bean which is naturally caffeinated,” Levin explained. “It’s only available in “original” flavor now — a sort of teriyaki — but Turkey Perky Jerky is coming soon.”  Each one-ounce serving of jerky has 60 mgs. of caffeine (for comparison, a Red Bull has 80 mgs.), but since it is metabolized with protein, “the energy curve is steadier and lasts longer,” says Levin. “There’s no sugar crash.”

The partners, who live in Colorado, have focused on markets in skiing areas so far, but are eager to break into Philadelphia. “We’re looking for stores to carry it in Philly,” said Levin.  “I so miss the Philly food trucks, and I can’t find a decent pretzel anywhere else on earth.”

Perky Jerky

via City Paper