— By Matthew Pioro
Recently, Clif Bar released its line of Clif nut-butter filled bars. The lineup by the Emeryville, Calif.-based company includes peanut butter, chocolate peanut butter, chocolate hazelnut butter and coconut almond butter. Clif says the fat in the nut butter will add another energy source along with the carbs in each bar. Fat, of course, is an energy source your body relies on more heavily at lower intensities, Zone 2 for example, so it’s good to have in the mix on your long, long rides. Of course, the carbs are good when you turn up the intensity. The bars are organic and non-GMO. They don’t contain partially hydrogenated oils, high-fructose corn syrup, artificial flavours or synthetic preservatives. They’re made in Canada, too.
About a week ago, I put the Clif nut-butter bars to the test at a local cycling race. But before I brought the bars with me, I had to find out the consistency of the nut-butter fillings. You see, I throw my grub into a Colibri reusable snack bag. (Mine has a pattern featuring bikes, of course, but any small snack bag works.) I like to cut up a bar or two, drop it in the bag and fish out bite-size bits from my right jersey pocket (always the right!) during a race. For my race, I tossed in some Clif Bloks and some beef jerky. With the nut-butter bars, I was worried the filling might be a bit oozy. I mean, I’m not opposed to mixing flavours. I’m not put off by a jerky/Blok combo, but I didn’t want to get slimed each time I grabbed some grub.
The nut butters have a good consistency: chewy, but consistent and solid enough. The bar bits kept their shape in my snack bag. They were easy to grab. And their taste is good, hewing closely to their standard Clif bar siblings. The butter is a fine new fuel for your rides.