Monday, February 02, 2009
For cereal bar addicts

I would like to tell you about the Wholebake 9Bar cereal bar. I received a big pack of them just before Christmas, a nice letter explaining how wonderful they are, and a Christmas card festooned with drugs references. How very festive.

Look, here's one:

Weird eh? Looks like something your granny baked, then decorated after a decoupage frenzy in HobbyCraft ending in the purchase of some beads, some worryingly-beige dried flowers and a self-adhesive calligraphy set.

Once opened, the 9Bar isn't any more attractive. It looks and smells *exactly* like something I used to cram between the bars of my hamster's cage that it gnawed to keep its teeth from growing so long that it penetrated its brain. (That's why my Mum told me, anyway.)

But once you get passed these minor and purely aesthetic hurdles, the bar itself is awesome. Solid, chewy, satisfying and extremely tasty. And syrupy. And also very sesame-y. I could easily eat 10 if they didn't fill you up after just one.

I'm not sure if you've tried a Gillian McKeith bar or one of those Food Doctor ones, but when faced with those or the hamster snack, I'm afraid little Hattie would be going without her dinner.

Before you question my single viewpoint, I tested it across market segments too. My little sister liked it. And so did a colleague. It was thumbs up across the board.

The one thing I didn't get was giggly or high as a kite, but I'm assuming the drug references are in name only. (Aside from the hemp, of course, but this is the Gillian McKeith hemp not the Cypress Hill hemp.)

But despite this being a wholesome treat, it suffers from the same thing a lot of these so-called health bars do. Just one is 562 calories and almost 30g of sugar. That's a lot. But if you were going to the gym this would be a great snack to get you through a few miles on the rower.

Or perhaps London has had a few inches of snow and you're going to have to run home? One of these'll get you there, with enough energy to spare to take on the local hoodies at snowball wars...

(This post is dedicated to all of you on Twitter that reminded of the word 'decoupage'. You know who you are.)