Very nice! Good and tight bind, fat hasn't rendered out. 160 is very low, I don't think I can even stabilize my smoker that low. What's the internal temp you aim for?
I'm curious about the garlic too. I like garlic powder for consistency of texture, and it is more "sterile" ish. Sometimes for this type of fresh sausage I would venture fresh garlic with varied results.
I have an MES, can set it from 100-275. I got the internal temp up to 155. I used granulated garlic, the recipe called for fresh but I didn't have and decent fresh and didn't want to go to the store.
I ground with a coarse plate and thought about regrinding half through a fine plate but did not. The taster that I cooked up had a very different texture than the finished product, overall I'm happy with.
I have that problem with smoked sausages too. The texture after smoking and blooming is much different than whan you would get on a patty on the stovetop. Hard to tell you got it right until you're done.
I used a nice chardonnay for my last batch of goose sausage and ale for the batch before that. Game can take that flavor and run with it. I have an old refrigerator that is metal inside and out. It died recently and I'm going to make a new smoker out of it.
I used to butcher with friends. We would get 6 sides of beef from a farmer we knew and process them in a weekend. We setup the 3 stall garage with space for the meat saw and grinder, tables where the kids trimmed scrap off the bones for hamburger grind, and a table for sausage making. All meat was ground on Saturday and mixed with spices then we stuffed sausages on Sunday. Nice part about working in the garage in Nov is temp control. We kept it about 40 degrees as we worked so everything was nice and cold. Big walk in freezer in the corner fr freezing wrapped cuts and every family got theirs cut different. When done we opened the doors, hosed off and washed all the tables then scrubbed and hosed the floor off. Made for easy cleanup of what can be a messy process when dealing with 2,000+ pounds of meat!