Chicago Startup of the Month: Journey Bar

I can’t decide what’s worse about today’s nutrition bars: the names or the flavors.

The names are usually uncreative and gym-themed (Super-Plex-Ultra power bar, anyone?), but most of the flavors I see on the shelves look like they’d find a better home in a Ben & Jerry’s pint.
Seriously, what’s with nutrition bar companies and peanut butter, brownies, and cookies?
Just check some of these out:
Carmel Double Chocolate Crunch, Almond Brownie, Tri-O-Plex Gourmet Brownie, Muscle Milk Vanilla Toffee Crunch, Optimum Nutrition Marshmallow Treat, or Big 100 Colossal Super Cookie Crunch Bar (because they really need ‘Big’ and ‘Colossal’ in the same name).

Who makes this stuff? Willy Wonka?

And don’t even get me started on the ingredients list…

I’ll save that rant for another day, because I have the solution.

A Chicago startup called Journey Bar has made a snack I can get behind. It’s a nutrition bar that gives you a fill without all the flavor. No, they aren’t plain, but the flavors are subtle. It’s not something I can explain, but it’s good. Coconut Curry and Sesame Ginger are my favorite flavors.

Journey Bar

journey-productsI usually have a few rolling around my backpack on any given day. Oh, and they also taste pretty good. Not quite “Super-Ultra-Triple-Fudge-Protein-Brownie” good, but more of a “whole-grain-herbs-and-spices” good.
They come in multiple, country-oriented flavors and have maps to accompany each one. I feel like they’d make a great snack for a backpacking traveller (even though the map on the package is purely decorative and serves little use in navigation).
I also dig the name Journey Bar. I haven’t been traveling in a while, but my latest non-urban adventure was a weekend camping out at Starved Rock State Park (there is no Starved Rock-flavored Journey Bar yet). I’ll save my Starved Rock State Park rant for another post, but tease you with some mediocre pictures I took with a waterproof camera.

We went flyfishing at sunrise on the Vermillion River
river fishing at sunriseCaught one little Smallmouth Bass
vermillion river smallmouthSaw some waterfalls and caves
illinois waterfallstarved rock happy cave

And a snake

snake in illinois

Ate some Journey Bars
Journey Bar
As I said, keep an eye for more on Starved Rock in another post, but for now I’ll give you the rundown on a 5-star scale:
Starved Rock: 4/5
Matthiessen State Park: 5/5
Campsite: 5/5
Fishing: 2/5
Hiking: 3/5

Overall for a weekend hiking/camping/fishing trip: 4/5

And I know I got too distracted with Starved Rock and somehow wrote this whole post without mentioning how Journey Bar shares their name with legendary American rock band, Journey.




  1. nice snake picture. and the picture of the band with badly dated hair.

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