Not long ago, most entrepreneurs dreamed of dot-com careers. Now they want to be chocolate tycoons. In San Francisco, Timothy Childs and Rob Polevoi left their high-tech jobs and launched Cabaret Chocolates, which offers intense, diamond-shaped truffles ($15 for nine; 415-294-4492 or The most stylish chocolatier in Chicago, Katrina Markoff of Vosges Haut-Chocolat, has opened a branch in New York City where she sells exquisite wedding cakes. Her bright pink Gatsby has dense chocolate layers and Champagne-infused ganache ($16 per person; 212-625-2929 or Former Florida real estate developer Bill Gardner joined his wife, Becky, at her candy company, Williams & Bennett, to make Artisan Oreos, covered in dark and milk chocolate and elegantly patterned with gold ($20 for 12; 561-276-9007). Cocoa + Co., a Web-based company started by a wine-industry veteran, sells candy from around the world, including chocolates from elite Italian producer Amedei and 95 kinds of bars from masters like New York's Christopher Norman (

—Kate Krader