THE STORY BEHIND OUR BARS
33's Italian-inspired bars, Amore & Eroica: an Anglo-Italian love story 17 years in the making
The story of our bars begins on a plane somewhere over the Alps flying from Rome to London in 2002, because it was here that Erica and I first met. An Italian, she was coming to the UK to work on a project, while I was on my way home to the UK after a job in Italy. Love was in the air that day big time and we've been together ever since. We were married in Italy in 2009.
Getting hitched in Siena back in 2009 (Pan Forte just out of shot ;))
And it's here our bars first rear their heads, because our wedding reception was in a tiny hilltop village in Tuscany, a place we spent a lot of time in before, during and after the big day and one we still return to regularly. And after our early morning training runs or rides through the stunning Tuscan countryside whenever we're there, we make a beeline for the local pasticceria which serves the most phenomenal coffee and handmade local treats.
Our standout favourite is always the same - their incredible Pan Forte.
Literally translated as 'strong bread' this is a mighty combination of crushed fruit, nuts, honey and spices smooshed together and served up in slices. A nutrient dense real food delight that satisfies tastebuds and performance, looking forward to it's delectable hit fuels us through the end of fast sessions, while on longer runs or rides you'll usually find a slice or two tucked into our pockets or packs.
The Pan Forte that started it all - still made today exactly as it was when we first had it in 2009 and by the same master pasticcere
Created centuries ago in Tuscany as portable fuel for soldiers on long campaigns, Pan Forte is still only produced in Tuscany where it's made among a small band of dedicated producers who take their craft as seriously as their food.
For years now we've been plotting on how to create high performance bars from this most perfect of wholefood high performance bases.
But in the early days it was a pipe dream - the production and development costs were simply beyond 33's coffers when the company began. As an example our first products in 2012 were made by us in our London kitchen with our mums helping out and the rest of the family running sacks to the local Post Office!
But every time we returned to Tuscany and tucked into that first bite of Pan Forte we'd go back to the drawing board, and two years ago we were finally able to set the project in motion. Today we are excited beyond belief to bring a taste of Tuscany to athletes everywhere with our two bars, the 33 Amore Energy Bar and the 33 Eroica Protein bar.
33's Amore & Eroica: where do the names come from?
33 Eroica Protein Bar
L'Eroica (in English 'The Heroic') is a legendary cycle race mixing Tuscany's twisting tarmac with its equally twisty (and bumpy) 'strade bianche' or 'white roads'. These are narrow unpaved dirt tracks that criss-cross the rolling hills, olive groves and vineyards of the region, so-called because of their distinctive white colour.
The race began as a classic summer event (you can read more about that one here), but fast became such a fixture among ex-pros that another version is now run as one of the opening Spring Classics of the professional season.
33's Warren (3rd from left, no helmet) takes on the 2013 L'Eroica with 1973 World Champion and winner of all three major Grand Tours Felice Gimondi (1st left) and legendary Italian climber and 1999 Alpe d'Huez stage winner Giuseppe Guerini (2nd left). Former pro and total inspiration Fred Morini is also in the mix (yellow hat, 2nd from right). With 120km still to go at this stage it's likely everyone in this shot is packing some Pan Forte in a shirt pocket!
L'Eroica is a hard race, on a hard course, for hard riders and with a name that literally does mean 'The Heroic' we couldn't think of a better monicker for this most mighty of bars to reward heroes in all sports at the end of their labours. With each bar weighing in at a whopping 100 grams and packing 20 grams of the highest quality protein alongside 409 natural wholefood calories, this is every hero's hard-earned delight.
33 Amore Energy Bar
'Amore' is Italian for love, and this was always the perfect name for our Pan Forte inspired energy bar because you and your performance are going to love this bar, while thanks to its standout all natural ingredient quality and powerful nutrient profile, it's going to love you right back.
Note: if do happen to have any of these in an Italian household, confusion may occur. This is because 'amore' is also the most common form of endearment between Italian couples, so in any Italian house you'll regularly be surrounded by an ongoing chorus of 'amores' as conversation flows. Don't worry, they're not after your bars ;)
And that friends, is the story of how these bars made it all the way from Tuscany, to you. Enjoy!
Warren & Erica, co-founders, 33, May 2019