ALL ABOUT HOLL’S CHOCOLATES
In 1986 Fritz retired from Broughton’s, but he wasn’t ready to slow down yet. Friends encouraged him to return to his original training, and in April of 1986, Holl’s Chocolates was born in the founder’s kitchen.
A local wine shop was Fritz’s first customer. Only eight months after the business started, the wine shop sold over 400 pounds of Holl’s chocolates. As a result of this demand, the Holl family kitchen became a chocolate factory, much to the dismay of Fritz’s wife Elisabeth. The Holls decided to make a go of the business and invest in a “real” location.
They moved to a small storefront about 10 miles away in Parkersburg, West Virginia. The entire space, which housed both the production and the selling areas, was about 600 square feet. The store was located on a steep hill just off of a fairly busy street and had only enough parking for four cars. Despite these obstacles, people went out of their way to visit the little chocolate shop just to try Fritz’s chocolates.
It was in the shop that Elisabeth’s skills were put to use. As a young woman, she had worked at one of the finest florist shops in Zurich. The shop’s elite clientele expected an exceptional level of personal service. Clerks were expected to greet their customers by name and to know their favorite flowers and their spouse’s favorite flowers.
When a customer entered the chocolate shop, Elisabeth would greet them by name and have a sample of their favorite chocolate ready. This special attention, and the superior taste of Fritz’s chocolates, made a trip to Holl’s Chocolates an experience people were eager to tell their friends about.