Unlike many new emerging plant-based companies, premium dark chocolate brand SoChatti wasn’t founded out of a love for the product. Indianapolis-based entrepreneur Matt Rubin actually started the vegan chocolate brand out of love for his wife.

After Matt’s self-confessed chocoholic wife Sarah was diagnosed with a dairy allergy, she was faced with a future without the sweet treats she loved. “I was definitely angry,” she told the Indy Star“There was probably some ugly, angry crying involved as well.” 

Matt was forced to throw away Sarah’s precious milk chocolate stash, and after witnessing her distress whilst he did it, he knew then he wanted to help her and other dairy allergy sufferers.

“As I’m holding it over the trash can, she started getting really upset and said, ‘I’m never going to eat anything good again.’ It was somewhere between despair and anger. I just really wanted to heal that moment,” he explained.

In a pure act of love, despite the fact he’d never been fussed about chocolate, Matt’s vegan, premium chocolate brand SoChatti was born.

The product development process began by roasting cacao nibs in the couple’s oven at home, then after much trial and error, and many voluntary friend-tasters, a bonafide chocolatier told Matt he should be selling his product.

“I was like, how hard can it be?” said Matt. “Turns out making chocolate is really hard. But I didn’t know that at the time, and it was worth a shot.”

Not content with making ordinary chocolate-based products, Matt decided to opt for the premium experience with his brand. SoChatti’s dark chocolate – made with responsibly sourced cacao by chef Jessica Halstead – is sold in packages, which are then warmed at home by the customer, and drizzled over everything from fruit to popcorn to cookies.

People love SoChatti’s chocolate so much, the company is expanding to a larger space in order to help it fulfill demand.

“Sometimes it’s hard to believe in a way how far the company has come,” said Sarah. “There were moments [in the beginning] where you’d think what came out of the oven cannot possibly be chocolate.”