On the road today I pulled over for a quick pitstop at the halfway point for the day’s climb. Myself and a friend were gunning for the 3300 crown of Emei, 32km away and needed some road fuel. I’m a fan of Snickers for a quick and dirty approach to getting a climb like this done so it was natural for me to raid that little brown box chilling on the shelf in front of the register. What I grabbed instead was a real marvel: Verycow, a fake Snickers. So obvi I bought a few, ate them and decided to give a complete review.
Let’s start with the name. I love it. It seemingly doesn’t make sense but if you look at in Chinese (最牛), slang for “the coolest”, which the direct translation doesnt capture at all. The name Verycow isn’t cool at all but it is at the same time and on the grounds of confusion and irony, I think it’s perfect. (10/10)
Next it’s probably important to talk about the appearance. The packaging is a pretty clever scrap of the real deal, so much so I was waving five of them at the cashier before I noticed the difference. When you peel open that wrapper you get a tidy looking little candy bar, slightly smaller in size compared to a Snickers. It gives me more confidence to suck one of these finger-sized delights down relative to the feeling of being a gluttonous manchild trying to convince myself that endurance athleticism validates eating mouthfuls of gooey sugar. (7/10)
What you all likely came here for was the real dirt on this little choco-knock-off: What the hell it tastes like. The composition of the bar is akin to that of a Snickers and package even refers to it in the same vain as a “peanut and nougat packed chocolate”. We’ll take it piece by piece then. As for the peanuts (the heart and soul of a Snickers) they were far fewer than anticipated. The only benefit being I didn’t crowd the crevices of my molars with homemade crunchy, but still, I felt it a little underwhelming (1/3.3).
Then there’s always the delightful nougat and caramel of a conventional bar. In the impostor’s case, there was no caramel at all. Bummer. The nougat was distinct. It had the consistency of a non-Newtonian liquid, or at least what I imagine that to be like. It was springy yet malleable at the same time. It didn’t stick and coat my teeth like the real article, but it seemed to hold some radical gravity to itself in my mouth and if broken apart would bring itself back together. It softened over time as I chewed it (always a plus). But upon swallowing it would cling to my throat like a leech despite previously seeming not-so-sticky. (1/3.3)
Finally as any Snickers enthusiast would adamantly agree the pièce de résistance is the chocolate coating. I believe in the case of a Verycow was really just a damn good phony, like some long-lost Confederate corn-and-chiccory substitute. The chocolate was smooth and dark, albeit a bit thin. It had the taste and texture of chocolate (composite material). I have a hunch it’s actually a rehashing of an old military chocolate mock-up because it didn’t melt over time. All said, with Snickers the chocolate is the thing and this fell far short. (1/3.3) (Total: 3/10)
Last I want to discuss the Verycow’s durability. These things are tough. In the heat of summer you can count on a Snickers to rapidly deteriorate in your pocket, eventually becoming an even gooey texture. The Verycow in the other hand handled heat like a champ. I threw the whole lot into the swampy hot middle pocket of my jersey and each one came out intact. They preserved their shape and more amazingly the chocolate didn’t cling to the wrapper, or my fingers, or my jersey pocket. These things are apocalypse ready. The only concern being whether that’s the type of thing I should feel comfortable eating. (8/10)
In total that gives the Verycow a final score of 70%. Not too bad! If you’re in the middle of nowhere China and need some pedal fuel then a Verycow may be the Verything you need.