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Voom Energy Taster Pack

7
£7.00

VERDICT:

7
10
Tasty but not overpowering flavours, easy to open and with a texture that is easy to consume
Easy to open
Not overly sweet
Limited flavours
Simple carbohydrate base
Weight: 
200g

The Voom Taster Pack consists of four bars, aimed at before, during and after exercise. The bars have a taste that is not overly strong, and a texture that makes them easy to eat. The packets are also very easy to open while riding, which is very welcome – especially in the winter.

The taster pack consists of each of the four bars Voom produces: the pre-workout Beta Blast, two for during exercise – the Electro Energy and the Caffeine Kick, with a serious 175mg kick – and the RecoverFudge designed for post-workout recovery.

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Each bar is shaped as four blocks that are easy to bite off individually, making it easy to manage intake.

Although each bar is a different flavour, there's only one option for each area of nutrition, which might limit your choice if you don't like the taste. Generally, the flavours aren't overly strong.

The texture makes them really easy to consume, too, as they aren't too chewy. I would have no issues using them in races or high-intensity training sessions.

I found the foil wrapping with serrated edges really easy to open while riding, which is a big plus for winter riding when wearing gloves, although almost every time a small corner came off separately, which made it a little harder to ensure the whole packet was safely stowed away after eating.

> How to eat right for sportives and long rides

The sugar content in each bar is a mix of raw cane sugar and glucose syrup. Both of these are simple sugars and and might not provide as much energy uptake within the body as others such as maltodextrin, which is a long-chain format of glucose, or products with fructose, which can increase absorption. Unless you are racing, or require the maximum absorption possible, this may not be the most important factor though. I found the type and amount of energy provided by the bar designed for consuming while exercising sufficient for moderate intensity rides of up to four hours.

All the bars are gluten free, and all except the RecoverFudge are suitable for vegans.

Voom Pocket Rocket Beta Blast

The Beta Blast is designed for consuming before rides – around 15-30 minutes before exercise is the suggestion. Key ingredients are 150mg of caffeine, which is a significant amount, and also 2g of beta alanine which is a non-essential amino acid that has been shown in studies to improve performance and endurance. As a non-essential amino acid it is already created by the body, but it is used alongside an essential amino acid, L-histidine, to create carnosine which helps regulate acidity levels within the blood – reducing lactic acid being the main likely benefit. Studies claim that it improves performance specifically within cycling, with possible benefits such as improved repetitions when training or increased maximum output.

Beta alanine doesn't have a taste to it, but it can potentially give you a slightly tingling feeling, something I did find myself. Shortly after eating a block I experienced a tinging around my mouth and then my head more generally. This is considered normal and not something to worry about, although it may feel strange the first time it happens.

The caffeine content is quite high – 150mg is about the same amount as two cans of Red Bull, four 330ml cans of Coca-Cola or about two espressos. With this high content in mind, it will be important to consider what you consume following it during exercise.

The bar also delivers a total of 40g of carbohydrate and 150kcal across the four blocks.

The Beta Blast bar has an orange flavour but it's quite subtle and not at all overpowering. The texture is similar to the others in the tester pack, with the exception of the RecoverFudge, and is quite 'chalky', but not chewy at all; assuming you like the flavour, it's quite easy to consume.

Voom Pocket Rocket Electro Energy

Designed for eating during exercise, the Electro Energy bar has 40g of carbohydrate, 36g of which is sugars, delivers 160kcal in total, and also has a 100mg mix of electrolytes.

The bar has a mild citrus taste and isn't overly sweet. I found it very tasty and a flavour I was happy to eat throughout a longer ride without getting sick of the flavour.

Just like the pre-workout Pocket Rocket, the texture is a little chalky and not at all chewy, making it easy and quick to consume on the go.

The pack suggests taking one block per 15 minutes of exercise, so 40kcal and 10g of pure sugar, with the whole bar providing suitable energy uptake over an hour, although studies have shown that people can take on board more, either as pure glucose, or even more with a glucose/fructose mix.

Voom Pocket Rocket Caffeine Kick

The Pocket Rocket is designed to give a boost during exercise, and with a huge 175g caffeine content and 100mg taurine it will certainly do that. This is higher than every other energy bar or gel I have used previously.

The bar has the same easy-to-eat texture as the Electro Energy and Pocket Rocket bars.

I found the berry flavour very pleasant; there is a little aftertaste because of the caffeine, though not as much as I would have expected given the high content, and it's not as strong as in other products I've tried, even those with lower amounts of caffeine.

Voom Protein RecoverFudge

As the name suggests, this is designed for post-exercise recovery. It has a mix of carbohydrate and protein at a 3:1 ratio, with the 50g bar still providing a significant 208kcal energy total from the raw cane sugar and glucose mix. Other ingredients include whey protein isolate for the main protein element, and also coconut oil, full cream and butter, so it isn't suitable for a vegan diet, unlike the others in the range.

It doesn't have quite the same chalky texture as the other bars, although slightly more than a normal bar of confectionary fudge, and does have a slightly chewy fudge feel. It has a slightly more crumbly feel than the others in the box, but as it's designed to be eaten after you've finished riding, I don't think this is a concern.

If you like fudge then I am confident you will like this. I found it very moreish – and worth putting in a big ride if this was the reward afterwards.

Value

All three of the energy bars cost £1.50 each, while the RecoverFudge bar is £2.50, so the taster box is more about convenience than cost saving. If you like the bars and want more then a box of 20 is £27 (£1.35 each), with the RecoverFudge £33 for a box of 15 (£2.20 each).

That makes the energy bars pretty good value in comparison with others. The RecoverFudge is more expensive either as a single bar or box of 15, although this is typical for protein bars compared to energy bars.

Torq Energy Bars are slightly smaller (45g) and deliver 32g of carbs, but cost £29.25 for a box of 15 (though the ingredients are organic), while OTE's Duo Bars are bigger (65g) but deliver a similar carbohydrate content (40g), and cost £2 each.

OTE Protein bars (David tested the OTE Milk Chocolate Peanut Protein Bar back in 2018) are also £2.50 (or £27 for a box of 12), though they're bigger than the Voom RecoverFudge at 62g.

Note: New customers of Voom can get a box for 'free' and just pay the shipping at £4.80.

Verdict

Tasty but not overpowering flavours, easy to open and with a texture that is easy to consume

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Voom Energy Taster Pack

Size tested: 50g

Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

From Voom:

ENERGY BAR SELECTION

A selection of sports nutrition bars with one protein bar and three fast-acting glucose-based bars. Ideal as cycling energy bars or for anything active!

Includes:

Pocket Rocket Electro Energy

Pocket Rocket Caffeine Kick

Pocket Rocket Beta Blast

RecoverFudge™

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

From Voom:

Pocket Rocket Beta Blast:

PRE-WORKOUT SUPPLEMENT. ENERGY BAR FOR HIGH INTENSITY EXERCISE

40g carbohydrate or 150kcal in four chunks.

2g of beta alanine* - ideal for use in high intensity work.

150mg of caffeine to give a mental and physical boost.

Ideal mix of rapid energy delivery, fatigue resistance and stimulation.

Zesty orange flavour with real freeze-dried fruit.

Use pre-workout or before competition to give you the best start.

This Pocket Rocket will help you lift off!

Pocket Rocket Electro Energy

RAPID ENERGY DELIVERY HOUR AFTER HOUR.

40g of carbohydrate & 160kcal in a solid energy bar.

100mg full spectrum electrolytes to speed up hydration and fight cramp.

Added B vitamins contribute to a reduction in tiredness and fatigue.

Lemon & lime flavour from freeze-dried fruit.

The Electro Energy will keep you going faster for longer.

All the power you need for 1 hour in 4 bites.

Pocket Rocket Caffeine Kick

AN EXTRA BOOST, JUST WHEN YOU NEED IT.

Provides a mental and physical boost.

40g carbohydrates and 160kcal.

175mg of caffeine with a fatigue-resistant effect.

B vitamins contribute to reduced tiredness and fatigue.

100mg of taurine can increase alertness.

Natural berry flavour and freeze-dried fruit.

Get going and get home with VOOM.

Protein Bar RecoverFudge

ONE OF THE TASTIEST RECOVERY PROTEIN BARS!

Fast-acting, delicious recovery on-the-move or at home.

Promotes recovery and aids muscle repair.

Protein bar packed with 10g protein from whey isolate.

Optimum carbohydrates to replenish muscle glycogen.

MCTs for an alternative energy source and endurance booster.

Carbs and protein together enhances uptake of both macronutrients.

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10

Easy to consume with a texture I found OK. It is also stable through a range of temperatures and shouldn't melt or go sticky in hot weather or go too hard in winter temperatures.

Rate the product for performance:
 
7/10

Hard to measure, but using the bar designed for during exercise, the type and amount of energy provided felt sufficient for moderate intensity rides of up to four hours.

Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

Similar to other energy products.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Easy to open, pleasant tastes, and texture I found great for riding. Nutrition content and the delivery of it within the body is impossible to gauge, but I experienced no negative effects.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The RecoverFudge was very tasty, but all flavours in general were quite mild but pleasant.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Nothing I disliked, just be aware of beta alanine and the possible tingling.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

Torq Energy Bars are slightly smaller (45g) and deliver 32g of carbs, but cost £29.25 for a box of 15 (though the ingredients are organic), while OTE's Duo Bars are bigger (65g) but deliver a similar carbohydrate content (40g), and cost £2 each.

OTE Protein bars are also £2.50 (or £27 for a box of 12), though they're bigger than the Voom RecoverFudge at 62g.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

How well the bars work is hard to quantify, but they are palatable, with flavours that don't overpower and a texture that makes them easy to consume.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 35  Height: 168  Weight: 62

I usually ride:   My best bike is: Cannondale SystemSix

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, sportives, mtb, Lots of gravel style riding

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