It had been a long day exploring the captivating Florida A&M University, dining in at the Black-owned Pineappetit, and grooving at the Bradfordville Blues Club, before the night was topped off with a box of mouth-watering chocolate treats.
During a media trip to Florida’s capital city, Visit Tallahassee and The Zimmerman Agency surprised us with The Chocolate Dandies‘ very own freshly baked fudge brownies and gourmet brown butter chocolate chunk cookies. As the chocolate oozed, our palettes sang with gratitude.
Three young Black entrepreneurs are behind The Chocolate Dandies, Noble Sissle, IV, 15; Royal Sissle, 14; and Knight Sissle, 12. The Tallahassee-based brownie company, launched in June 2020, was proudly named after the 1920’s musical, The Chocolate Dandies, co-written by the brothers’ notable great-grandfather, Noble Lee Sissle.
The hardworking trio, alongside their culinary creative and business-savvy parents, offers a wide variety of chocolate-scrumptious flavors for all fudge lovers. The treats even aim to satisfy those who would prefer gluten and sugar-free options.
“The menu is a chocolate lover’s dream. Peanut butter fudge, espresso, and cheesecake brownies are just a few of the pastries crafted to satisfy your sweet tooth. Customers have the option of ordering a single brownie or a full batch—all available at their website,” according to Visit Tallahassee.
The Dandies are even offering DoorDash deliveries and nationwide shipping. You can order your sweet treats, here.
In an effort to grow the business, The Chocolate Dandies stay active in the community, from FAMU’s athletic events to Black History Month celebrations at the historic Brokaw McDougall House to Food Truck Fridays to the Southwood Town Center for the nighttime market, and more.
With chocolate treats, these talented brothers tell BLACK ENTERPRISE that they are striving to create a legacy, build generational wealth, and pursue a number of exciting future endeavors.
In the name of your business, what does family legacy mean to each of the Dandie boys?
Royal: Our family legacy is truly important to us. We decided to name our business from our great-grandfather’s Broadway musical of the same name. We relish in it!
Knight: We believe it is important to recognize and uphold this legacy for our business.
Noble, IV: Legacy is also important to us because we plan to grow the brand of the business to expand over future generations.
How involved are your parents in your company?
Knight: Our parents are very dedicated and important. They help manage the company and make sure it’s on track for success. Our dad, Noble Sissle, III, is the main baker of the company and the graphic designer. He also owns his own business, nlsstudios.com. Our business relies on his baking skills and our mom, E. Marie Sissle, is the main marketing guru of the company. She has successfully marketed our business with her strong social media skills. She, too, owns her own company, somoarts.org. The management help from both of our parents steadily improves our business operations while showcasing professionalism.
How does each Dandie team member bring their individual talents to the company?
Noble Sissle, IV: I am our most outgoing and charismatic member of the team. I am the spokesperson for the company and understand the importance of being the face of the company.
Knight Sissle: I am also a spokesman sometimes. I sometimes serve as a mascot: supportive and hardworking! In addition to being a spokesperson, I assist with packaging and delivery.
Royal Sissle: I serve on the financial side of the business. I sometimes discuss operation plans with my mother and financial operations with my dad. During business operations, I handle the cash register and swipe the cards!
What have you enjoyed most about being young entrepreneurs?
Noble, IV: We love receiving support from our local community and family/friends from around the country. People believe in our full potential and want to help. We enjoy watching how our brand influences other young entrepreneurs to explore their full potential for success. No matter who you are or what age you are, The Chocolate Dandies inspires people to be what they want and just go for it!
What are some of the challenges you have had to overcome during your entrepreneurial journey?
Noble, IV: Getting help to meet our demand has been a little challenging. We truly believe in quality over quantity, but I would love to be at the stage of being more consistent. While steadily growing the business, my brothers, Royal, Knight, and I, are certain to meet the quantity demand while maintaining quality so that we can have the best of both worlds.
What does the future look like for The Chocolate Dandies?
Noble, IV: The future of The Chocolate Dandies includes a number of things. We would like to become an international company that provides quality sweets around the world. We also are looking at developing an animated TV show, a mobile game, and national franchises centered around our brand.
What advice would you give young people who are looking to pursue entrepreneurship?
Royal: I believe the first step is to find a motive. Be that a desire for money, as true as it is, or wanting to learn something new. Next is to plan. What do you want to sell? Who is your audience? Who will buy your products? How much will it cost to produce your product(s)? Then you get to work. Hard work! Find your audience and deliver what appeals to them. For us, it was brownies as a start, because a wide variety of people love them. Spread the word and pounce on the opportunities and stay dedicated. Keep a good strong mentality that will get you through the starting times.