It’s New Hampshire Maple Weekend which is a perfect time for me to share a company I discovered during Ice Fest that makes all natural athletic fuel in a few different varieties. UnTapped started in late 2013 with a desire to share only of natures best energy boosters… pure maple syrup. I’ll be honest and state I thought maple syrup was just basically sugar and didn’t understand how it could offer more than just a quick sugar boost. On Untapped’s website the benefits are made clear:
• Maple syrup is low glycemic. Containing all natural sugars, maple syrup provides prolonged, sustained energy rather than offering a quick burst and subsequent crash like many adulterated sports sweeteners.
• Maple syrup contains Calcium, Riboflavin, Manganese, Zinc, and Potassium. These inherent components of maple syrup promote energy production, muscle recovery, and help prevent cramping.
• Maple syrup features more than fifty antioxidants. This cocktail of polyphenols have powerful free radical fighting properties. Foods with similar qualities include berries, green tea, red wine, and flaxseeds.
• Maple syrup contains amino acids, which help prevent muscle deterioration.
• Maple syrup is water soluble making it easy to digest, quick to absorb, and no more gut-rot from downing chemical-laden energy gels! Plus it’s a cinch to clean up; just rinse with water. Alternative sports gels are like tar to clean up.
All this means that UnTapped maple is an organic, single ingredient, one-stop-shop for your on-the-go needs.
UnTapped offers 5 varieties of energy boosting products, 3 different flavored “waffles” and 2 styles of syrup pouches. I received a box with a full assortment and have been testing them while ice climbing and back-country skiing for the last two months. I also enlisted my skeptical (and incredibly loving) wife, cultured and sushi aficionado 6-year old son, and “all I want to eat is Cheerios” two year old daughter. We are ready to share our experience…
Let’s start with the simplest of the products…
Maple UnTapped is a .96 fl oz (28.4ml) pouch of 100% pure organic Vermont maple syrup, Grade “A” which is “amber/rich”. Essentially 100 calories in the one ounce pouch, 80 mg of Potassium, and 26 g of carbohydrates (all sugar). For daily vitamin allotments it provides 4% Calcium, 30% Riboflavin, 4% Zinc, 2% Thiamin, 2% Magnesium, and 60% Manganese.
As far as syrup goes I don’t have to much to add here. The taste is on par with the best local syrups we usually pick up this time of year. At about $1.85/pouch* it’s a bit more expensive than well known GU Energy Gel (at about a $1.25/pouch). That per pouch cost equates to $29.60/pint, against an average Vermont maple syrup pint price of $14.50.
While the convenience of the pouch may be nice, I have to say this is the one product from UnTapped I would probably avoid in lieu of just buying a pint, or quart, or gallon, of maple syrup and filling up a 5-ounce soft flask for a more affordable multi-shot option. While the first product in the line failed to win me over the rest of the offerings had much more to offer so read on to check them out!
Essentially the exact same thing as the previously mentioned “Maple UnTapped” but now organic coffee has been added bringing an average amount of 27 mg of sports enhancing caffeine. 27 mg, in case you are wondering, is about 1/3 the amount of caffeine in the average cup of coffee. I think this is a good amount for reaping the benefits of caffeine while exercising without experiencing the negative effects (dehydration, nervousness, shakes, etc).
While the addition of coffee obviously darkens the syrup beyond the typical spectrum the flavor is quite smooth. I was expecting a bitterness from organic black coffee but the two flavors are balanced and while I typically cut my coffee with a little cream or milk I found these to be quite tasty. What I am most surprised about here is how the pricing is the same as the un-altered Maple UnTapped. $1.85/pouch* is quite competitive when you compare it to other caffeine supplemented energy gels on the market (they average $2.08/pouch.
So Coffee UnTapped was a winner for me. A 100% pure and organic caffeine induced energy boosting product that tasted great at a cheaper price than the competitors. This one is worth trying!
Next up we look at some of the more “solid fuel” type offerings UnTapped has. Basically these pressed “waffles” based off the Dutch “Stroopwaffle“. As before I’ll start with the one that didn’t get a lot of rave reviews.
UnTapped Maple Waffle
First, what’s in it?
That’s a decent amount of calories from a 1.1 oz snack, and I especially like the amount of healthy fats derived from the Palm Fruit Oil, healthy fats are my friend in the cold months, but this one came up a bit flat in the taste department. My six-year old made that classic wrinkled face during his taste-test then asked if he had to finish it, the wife claimed it had a lack of flavor, and the two-year old decided it would be better to smush it into a paste and treat it like Play-Doh rather than food. Luckily, the other two flavors fared a bit better!
The Coffee Waffle, while not a winner with the wife, past my taste test for “need calories now” while schlepping up a few steep snow & ice slopes this winter. UnTapped does not disclose how much caffeine is in this product and I’m assuming it’s hard to get an accurate measurement somewhere along the processing part.
The Raspberry Waffle however won Best-In-Class from the whole family. Organic Red Raspberries added the sweetness and character that the regular Maple Waffle seemed to lack. It also boasts an extra 20 calories of fat (I knew Black Bears liked Raspberries for a reason). At about $2/waffle** this is a solid contender in the field of energy bars.
This is a cool local company with a great idea and some solid offerings. All natural athletic fuel is pretty dope. While the more “simple” offerings like the straight up syrup and maple waffle left us a little uninspired the caffeinated syrup and Raspberry Waffles became daily favorites. I have just enough left of my sample packets to hopefully get me through my upcoming ski trip to Iceland where we will be putting in some serious vertical mileage. If you are in the market for some locally sourced healthy energy “gels” and snacks you should check this company out!
See you in the mountains,
Northeast Alpine Start
* based on 20 packets / 1 carton pricing
** based on 16 waffles / 1 carton pricing
Disclaimer: UnTapped provided a sample for review. Some affiliate links above help support this blog at no cost to you! All opinions expressed our those of the author (and his immediate family).