Mocha Chocolate Shop in Richmond are the 2018 winners of the David Doorbar Award for Innovation and Excellence in Retail.
The award is run each year in David’s memory by the Original Richmond Business and Tourism Association, of which David was Treasurer for many years.
Dennis and Elizabeth Graves opened their shop in Trinity Church Square, Richmond in 2013. Dennis was previously a builder and Elizabeth an human resources manager.
They had been looking for a shop, and, while on holiday in the town, they saw what they thought would be the prefect spot for a chocolatiers – north facing premises so the chocolate doesn’t get too hot and good Market Place location.
Dennis enrolled on a chocolate making course and learnt the art of making his own chocolate.
Dennis said: “Our decision to explore chocolate making was borne out of curiosity – would these flavours work together?
“Why isn’t there a chocolate with this filling? Couldn’t this be made with real ingredients rather than flavourings?”
As the business has expanded they have opened a small seating area where homemade cakes and hot chocolates, coffees and mochas are enjoyed.
Mocha received some great accolades from the people who nominated them.
Amongst these were: “Friendly. Great service. Super merchandise. Everything that makes Richmond GREAT.”
“The shop front is welcoming, the interior is clean, bright and comfortable. The food and drink is of the highest quality and delicious. The staff are very friendly, knowledgeable and welcoming.”
Last year’s winners, Neeps and Tatties, who presented the award to Mocha said: “‘We were really pleased to have been asked to present the David Doorbar Award to our friends at Mocha.
“After winning the award last year, we understand what a privilege it is to be awarded the title, inspired by the hardwork, customer care and enthusiasm for businesses in Richmond provided by David Doorbar. We extend our Congratulations to Dennis & Elizabeth of Mocha.”
Elizabeth Graves is thrilled to have won the award.
She said: “Thank you so much to our lovely customers who took the time to vote for us. We believe it is personal service and a positive customer experience that will ensure high streets (and market places!) survive and Richmond excels in this. We have many great independent businesses.
“Thank you also to Original Richmond Business and Tourism Association – a great support and advocate for local businesses.”
Chair of the Association, Marcia McLuckie, gave praise to the people who run Mocha.
“Dennis and Elizabeth work hard to offer their customers the best quality and the best service. They have the support of lovely staff and together they offer a welcoming business for locals and visitors.
“They are a credit to the town, as are so many of the other of our good, niche, local businesses. We are very lucky to have such a strong retail presence in the town with very few empty shops.”
Others in the top ten of the 70 businesses who the public voted for are Brookes Family Convenience Store, Veterans Woodstore, The Raw Store, The Men’s Room, The Estate Café, Neeps and Tatties, Granny’s Kitchen, King Street Kitchen and Gift and Angus Morton Butchers. These are all thriving local businesses that have opened in Richmond within the last 10 years.