page contents

The Tastiest Gift You Can Give: Meet Marley Kaplan, Founder of ChocoTravlr

Photo by Emanuel Hahn (emanuelhahn.com)

Photo by Emanuel Hahn (emanuelhahn.com)

Our culture is abuzz with pictures of food and travels. As our Instagram followings grow so does the FOMO of whatever that person is eating or pangs of envy of their perfectly curated travel. Now you can have the perks, the chocolate perks, sent to the comfort of your own home. Basically you can now Netflix and Chill while chowing down on the finest of Norwegian chocolate curated by a local. Meet Marley Kaplan, the brainchild behind ChocoTravlr. Making your international chocolate addiction much more accessible.

1. ChocoTravlr is an international chocolate experience delivered directly to your mouth - monthly. Tell me more about your business and how I can make my personal chocolate addiction a bit more interesting by using your service?

 I created ChocoTravlr to share my love of experiencing different cultures with the rest of the world - though we're only available in the U.S. for now. Whether you're someone who wants to try as much chocolate as your stomach will allow, or someone who wants to receive a little bit of a different culture each month to spice up an average day until your next vacation, ChocoTravlr brings a bit of out of the ordinary joy to your day.

2. Who doesn't love chocolate?! How did you come up with the idea of making the experience of trying chocolate from all over the world so personal?

I lived in London for almost four years previously, and continue to travel to Europe as a consultant to the international startup market. My favorite thing is to bring back treats from my travels for friends and family to share a little bit of what I’ve experienced. For me, it's beyond the taste of the chocolate itself, and more about the recommendation from a local person and any stories they have tied to their own chocolate memories. This is why I decided to also include a postcard with a personal note or tale from the local curator. ChocoTravlr is a monthly chocolate adventure that I'm excited to share with people in volumes larger than my personal suitcase can carry!

3. As a foodie, what's your favorite place to travel to? Any restaurant recommendations?

Considering that for the first month of ChocoTravlr I chose to share Norwegian chocolate, I would have to say Norway is the top of my list - thus far! Not only is their chocolate amazing, but they also have the freshest fish. From smoked salmon at breakfast to amazing sushi dinners to grilled fish from the market at backyard barbecues, Norwegian seafood is the perfect pre-chocolate meal. 

4. Chocolate activates the brain to begin producing dopamine when consumed or thought about.  Is there a specific memory of chocolate that you have that exceeds the norm?

Of course there are the mandatory photos every toddler must take where they are covered in chocolate cake from their first birthday. I definitely have those buried somewhere in the family photo album and it's great to have that first chocolate memory to look back on. More recently, I was in Amsterdam visiting the startup ecosystem and took a personal weekend to spend time with one of my best friends I met while living in London. I spend time with my friends around the world whenever we can steal some time, and it's the little things that make big memories. We popped into the local store and went through the chocolate section, carefully checking out each and every bar on offer. Once we stepped outside with our new purchases - some extras in tow to bring back to NYC for friends - we dug in, tasting and swapping and deciding on our favorites. 

5. What's your next step in getting your product and service out into the world? Do you have any advice to the aspiring entrepreneur to get their product known to the public?

First off, thanks Six Degrees Society for featuring me on your site! I love being connected to a strong group of women doing cool things that bring out the best in them. Sharing my journey with communities I'm a part of - like Six Degrees Society - is the first step to sharing my mission of ChocoTravlr. I hope to inspire others to follow their own curiosity in their professional pursuits. One piece of advice I have is to be authentic with all endeavors. I make sure that any project I touch I believe in and know where I can truly add value. I would advise anyone on any career path to evaluate their trajectory and take the time to check in with themselves as they progress to make sure they are in their lane. The best snippet of advice I ever received myself was from a friend and overall mentor, who actually shared his grandfather's advice when he told me: When you're climbing the ladder that is life, make sure it is propped up against the right wall.