Uhockey reviews Designer Supplements SUSTAIN BAR and SUSTAIN PROTEIN
08-22-2006 06:26 AM
Uhockey reviews Designer Supplements SUSTAIN BAR and SUSTAIN PROTEIN
Yesterday I was fortunate enough to receive 3 Sustain Bars and a sample of Sustain Protein. Apparently DS realized who is doing the vast majority of their online marketing and handling FAR too many PMs and E-mails for his liking and decided it'd be a good idea if he knew something about the new product.
Peanut Butter Fudge
- Total Fat 9g
- Sat Fat 1.5g
- Total Carb 35g
- Fiber 2g
- Sugar 16g
- Protein 20g
Looks good. Of course more fiber and less sugar would be nice, but the raw honey is a definite plus and therefor the sugar is negligible compared to the junk carbs in SO many other products. No sugar alcohols, no trans fats, no artificial ingredients.....if I were in marketing for DS I'd be trying my best to get these in stock at Trader Joes and/or Whole Foods.
Outer Appearance/ Box:
I must admit, it is a little different. That's not to say it's a bad thing, it's just different. It reminds me of a frozen treat as opposed to a protein bar....which of course entailed me popping one of these badboys in the freezer (more on that later.) My one criticism would be that the font is blurry and definitely needs improvement. IMO, a celophane wrapper would be better, but I like the box too.
Mild, smooth, sweet enough, I love it. Apparently our testers have such great diets that they've never eaten true "Peanut Butter Fudge." As some of you may realize, peanut butter fudge rarely has STRONG chocoate flavor, but instead focuses on the Peanut Butter flavor with a fudge undertone. This bar, IMO, tastes like peanut butter fudge should and is VERY aptly named. In my years of eating protein bars (6+ at this time) there are only two I've tried that are "better," and neither is even close in terms of ingredients or meeting label claims (Labrada and Chef Jay.) It's better than the Snickers Marathon bars, it's better than the new Payday Protein bar, it's delicious.
Texture: 9/10 and 10/10 frozen
The paper box and the fact that someone compared it to a Klondike bar got me thinking. Bar 1 was eaten warm from my front porch and had the chocolate covered "cake-like" consistency many had mentioned. Very similar to some of the Labrada gold bars, but slightly different and somehow more satisfying to the tongue.
The second bar was eaten as part of breakfast this morning after spending 10+ hours in the freezer. At first I was kinda worried that the bar would be too hard and as such delay my breakfast (I usually wake up STARVING,) but thankfully I was wrong. Much like the previously mentioned Klondike bar, the outside was crisp and hard, the inside was chewy and creamy. Not only was the texture even BETTER frozen, but the flavor actually seemed STRONGER. Once I start getting these by the box I'll definitely be moving some to the hospital employee freezer for those times when I simply can't take the time for a meal. I REALLY wish we'd have had these during my surgery rotation.
The third bar will be sampled by my mother who attests that every protein bar she's tried outside of Snickers Marathon and Cliff Chocolate Peanut Butter is "disgusting."
Nutritional Profile: 9/10
My only complaint is the low fiber, otherwise I've not seen a better bar on the market, period.
Some will call me biased, but since I don't care I guess that's okay. Coming from someone with NO love for protein bars and a 100% clean diet for months and months at a time, this rating is stellar. To be blunt, whole food meals are ALWAYS best (you can't beat the combination of macro and micronutrients) but this is a pretty damned ample replacement, especially for those of us who aren't huge fans of artificial/junk ingredients.
I still remember the day Steve IMed me to tell me we were contemplating a protein bar. Upon receipt of nothing but the ingredients, macros, calories, and potential for a box of 12 for around $15-20 I simply said we'd be crazy to not do it. Despite my approval, I was still skeptical until I tasted it myself. Now all I can say is "Damn Steve, you were right, these are delicious."
Hey hey, look who finally got some Sustain. To kick off this review, let me first say that I've been looking forward to this product since the day I began working at DS. Obviously my knowledge of this product and the way we do business is far greater than any reviewer thus far, so let me simply say that you guys are truly lucky to have it. Every aspect of this product, from the labeling to the packaging to the formulation to the flavor received great attention from everyone at DS. Reading back over the posts on our employee board is really a testament to brainstorming and great minds thinking alike.
Ingredient Profile: 10/10 Suffice it to say I know more than you about the exact makeup, formulation cost, and labor behind this product. When I say this is the best casein based blend on the market, it's no bull****. I didn't know a lot about inulin until we began formulating, but I must say Steve knew what he was talking about on this one. Once we get the writeup out (yeah, a protein writeup, we're nerds) I'll be even more excited.
Texture: 9/10 in water To kick things off, I tried 28g of the powder mixed in 10oz of water using a long tea spoon. Even in comparison to Xtreme Formulations fantastic Ultrapeptide, this stuff blends excellent. No foam, a minimal amount of clumping that went away w/o excess effort, and a very smooth experience. The only thing that prevents this from being a 10/10 is the slight grit, likely caused by the inulin. It's nothing repulsively gritty like San's infusion, but it's not QUITE WPI smooth either. As I normally use protein powders to supplement whole food meals (AKA, topping for oats/sweet potatos/etc) the texture was not even as issue when I cooked up oats this morning. I'll try it over Sweet potatos with added PB this afternoon.
Taste: 9.5/10 I mentioned this in the Sustain BAR thread and I'll say it again here - true Peanut Butter Fudge distinctly lacks an overt "chocolate" flavor and is based far more heavily on Peanut butter with a soft chocolate undergone. So is this protein. I've tried PVL's Peanutbutter, SUSTAIN is better. I've tried Anabolic Innovations Chocolate Peanut Butter, SUSTAIN is WAY better. xxghostxx orgininally compared the flavor to a Chick-O-Stick, and true to form, ghost is frequently a voice of reason on this board....I couldn't have said it better myself. Seriously, considering the macro profile I could definitely see this product mixed with a small amount of water as a VERY adequate Peanut butter replacement for someone following a low fat/low cal diet.
I know the process that went into making this flavor. I know the people involved, the time involved, and the decisions that were made. Having finally tasted the product, all I can say is that the group never ceases to impress. A little more chocolate wouldn't hurt to quiet those who expect PB Fudge to be more like a Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup, but IMO, if I want chocolate, I'll drink Substance WPI Chocolate Malt. If I want Peanut Butter Fudge, I'll drink Sustain........actually, I have some Substance downstairs......a ****tail is definitely in order.
The only reason this isn't a 10/10 is because I'm saving that for the first company to nail Tiramisu or Creme Brulee WPI.
Overall: There's really not much else to say. As someone who follows a very strict diet, new proteins are something I have a great deal of passion for. This is, without a doubt, the best flavored casein based protein I've ever tasted. Considering the low fat + inulin, it is truly remarkable that the flavor is so on-point. There is no doubt this will become my worktime protein of choice (since 2-3 meals a day are oats/peanuts/protein powder in a plastic baggie.) While I could never limit myself to one choice since I have so much love for others (Substance Vanilla Bean and Chocolate Malt, Isobolic Raspberry Vanilla, GF-Pro Blueberry, Nectar Twisted Cherry) I do know that SUSTAIN will be on heavy rotation.
08-22-2006 06:30 AM
Good review uhockey. I really like the sound of the Sustain bar.
Controlled Labs Rep
RenegadeRows @ ControlledLabs.com |||||||||||| Psalms 23
CONTROLLED LABS products are produced in a GMP for Sport certified facility
08-22-2006 06:38 AM
NICE! I look forward to trying this out, and ya Isobolic is in my protein rotation as well. You should look into 4everfit's fruit blast whey isolate in mango flavor, WAY better then Nectar imho.
08-22-2006 06:53 AM
Sounds good, I'm really looking forward to trying the protien!
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