Govatos Chocolates, now embarking on 110 years in business, is a 3rd generation grassroots company.
The family business was founded in 1894 by John Govatos, a Greek immigrant. Initially sold under the trade name of "Queen Elizabeth Chocolates", John set up shop at 4th & Walnut Street in Wilmington, Delaware, a small bustling town.
Saving his money generated by brisk sales at the store, John brought his three half brothers to America. He installed all three in a boarding house and insisted they go to school. The oldest of the three was 25 years his junior. When John passed away in the early 1940’s only one … Nicholas … had any interest in what had become a confectionary store and soda fountain luncheonette.
Renamed in 1898, Govatos Chocolates & Luncheonette moved two more times. First to the 400 block of North Market Street where John introduced Wilmington to the latest rage, the ice cream soda! Sometime between 1910 – 1918 the growing business moved to its present location 800 Market Street.
Richard Govatos, Nicholas’ son and present owner, has been involved in the business since his teens, working the soda fountain, then managing and eventually ownership. Richard & Evelyn (wife) are credited with the remodeling of the store in 1985. The outcome resulted in a beautiful interior coupled with better retail efficiency for the candy counter and restaurant. Richard also opened a suburban location in the 1980’s, where its present location is 4105 Concord Pike in the Talleyville Shopping Center.
Third generation brothers, Nicholas & Richard Jr. have been in the business 30 & 25 years respectively. Nicholas manages the retail candy aspects and Richard Jr. heads up the chocolate factory production. Both have the same conviction to the business as their “forefathers”; to produce a consistent high quality assortment of homemade chocolates at a reasonable price. This along with diligent hard work has sustained and will catapult this family business into the future.
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