Best/Worst energy drinks, bars, and gels

Bro Deal

New Member
Jun 26, 2006
What do you think are the best and worst energy foods. Here's mine.

BAR: The original Powerbar. Tastes like ****. You can pound nails with them when it's chilly. They might be useful for hucking at dogs. A close second would be any of the granola-type bars.

DRINK: Hammer Nutrition's Sustained Energy. No coloring. No flavoring. No sweetner. Tastes like it might be made from flour. Simply dreadful.

GEL: Powergel. I bought a handful of the strawberry flavored version for a race and it was almost chewy at room temperature. At below room temperature you had to knead the package to soften it up. I heard from someone that there was a bad batch of strawberry, so maybe they have improved their formula. Anyway it didn't taste very good and neither did the lemon lime that I tried.

BAR: Grabber Energy bars, which are basically fruit bars. They taste good but I wouldn't eat a lot of them during a race because of the fruit.

DRINK: I use Cytomax, but I am not sure I would call it the best. It has a bit of an after taste and something in it does not disolve completely in water. I probably need to find a substitute. For ultra running I am fond of Ultra Fuel (400 Calories in 18 oz.) but it's too concentrated to use for cycling.

GEL: Carboom. Tastes good. It's not very viscous so it's easy and quick to consume it, just like a gel should be.
Best drink? - I have really come to love the Jelly Belly Sport beans. They come in a few flavors and really seem to work for me. They take the place of an electrolyte drink and give me something to chew on. They also prevent that sticky energy drink **** getting on your frame etc. They wouldn't be ideal to eat in the middle of a fast race, but on other occasions they are great.

Best bars - Clif Bars. I like the taste, the texture, and they seem to work.

I don't really have any worse, except I concur with your Powerbar critique.

I would be interested in hearing people's opinions about those tablets (I forgot the name) that you just drop into a water bottle to make a drink. I've got to try that.
Drinks: I don't really like the taste of red bull too much. Most energy drinks/sodas are too carbonated for my liking. I like Rockstar JUICED because its 70% juice or something like that.

Bars: The only energy bars I ever eat are cliff bars.

Gels: I've only tried a few different powergel flavors. I don't care for tangerine or caramel. Strawberry-banana is pretty good.
I'll agree with the critique of PowerBars. While some kinds don't taste half bad (peanut butter is pretty good), they get impossibly hard in chilly temperatures. I almost broke my teeth trying to get one down in the winter.
Hammer anything gets my vote as all time worst nasty taste... the drinks, the gels bleeeeeech...

Though I have to agree with the critique of Powerbars, unfortunately they work really well. Don't care for the taste or texture, but they are about the only thing that does not give me stomach troubles if I use them just before/during a race.Cliff Nectar bars are pure goodness, but they have nuts so that means a fair amount of fat too.

Gels - I have a preference for GU, but they killed my favorite flavor - bannana tasted just like bannana pudding to me.. but I still like vanilla and I mix my own flavors with plain and soda extracts - ginger ale gel anyone :D? Oh - and I've tried Cliff blocks - they are decent tasting, but I can't do them during a race - nearly choked trying to chew and swallow!! Work better for training rides when you can *stop* and eat them.

Drinks - I'm a Cytomax person too - the choice of flavors got me first. I was soooo sick of lemon lime everything. (I really want to try PowerBar's new Sun Tea flavor - sounds good - but then I thought that Cytomax Lemonade would be nice and it is pretty icky - lemon pledge!) I also use NUUN (the tablets that you drop in water), its just an electrolyte drink, no carbs. They just came out with a Cola flavor that I think is awesome, but I'm weird and prefer flat soda...