Energy gels are really useful for longer rides or races, those times when you want something that’s easy to digest and keeps your energy reserves stocked up. MuleBar realised that despite its range of energy bars tasting delicious (bar the Liquorice flavour which had us choking) that many riders like the ease of taking gels on a ride. So it’s gone and released a range of gels.
The origin and quality of ingredients is important to MuleBar – all its bars are made completely from natural and Fairtrade sourced ingredients – and the gels follow this pattern. There’s sugar sourced from brown rice syrup and Agave Nectar and Himalayan crystal salts, with the Cherry Bomb flavour tested here providing 114 calories and 28g of carbohydrate and 25g of sugar from each 37g gel packet. This compares well to other gels form the likes of Torq and SIS.
Taste is always a very personal thing, and MuleBar have made quite the impact with flavours like Strudel, Summer Pudding, Hanza Nut, Pinacolada, to name a few. So it’s little surprise that the first available gel from the new range is a tongue-tingling Cherry Bomb concoction. Now, I’m not really a cherry fan (aside from those glazed cherries you get on cupcakes) but I actually found the flavour very agreeable. Quite sweet, which I like, but not overly so, if you don’t like too sweet a taste. The Cherry Bomb has now been followed by the Lemon Zinger, which we will have in to test soon.
The gels have a large tear-off tab at the top which makes it one of the easier gel sachets to open, especially if you’re trying to do so while still riding. Only being a small 37g sachet makes it easy to get the contents down in just a couple of mouthfuls.
Once ingested, there was a noticeable increase in energy gels. I tested them by riding from London to Exeter in one stint and included a handful of gels that MuleBar founder Alex Smith gave me at the Cycle Show. Not having used them before I was impressed with the flavour, even after 10 hours of tough riding they still went down easily. But more importantly is the noticeable boost in energy when I was flagging and digging deep into my energy reserves.
They’ve got all the credentials for racers looking for an energy dense gel that actually tastes nice, but for more casual riders unworried about racing against the clock they make a handy alternative to stodgy energy bars or other snacks – allowing you to just get on and enjoy your ride without worrying about bonking.
The Mulebar gels are available at all good cycle shops nationwide now, and cost £1.50 per gel. For more info hit up www.mulebar.com and www.extrauk.co.uk. The company has also signed up to the 1% For The Planet programme, whereby 1% of sales will be donated to support environmental groups.