In this 2005 photo, Betty Blose adds chocolates to the case at the Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe in Cross Pointe Centre. FILE PHOTO BY JAN UNDERWOOD
Photo: Dayton Daily News
Photo: Dayton Daily News

Meet the founder of a local chocolate shop that’s been in business for 35 years

Daytonian of the Week Betty Blose has guided Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe through moves, expansions

How is it that Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe is not located in Bellbrook?

Our Daytonian of the Week this week knows the answer to that question, and many more. 

Betty Blose founded Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe in 1984 in the heart of Bellbrook. Fifteen years later, Blose decided to move the business to the Cross Pointe Shopping Centre in Centerville. After careful consideration, she decided to keep the “Bellbrook” name despite the change in zip code.

In 2019, Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe celebrated two milestone birthdays of sorts. The chocolate-making business that got its start in Betty’s kitchen turned 35 years old. And the shop’s satellite location of sorts in the Five Rivers MetroParks 2nd Street Market in downtown Dayton marked its 5th birthday.

Blose is no longer a one-woman show. Her son Marshall Blose and his wife, Laura Blose, joined the company in 2000. 

There have been many changes over the years, but one distinguishing characteristic of Betty Blose’s Bellbrook Chocolates has remained constant. Unlike many other chocolate makers, Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe has always used a single blend of light and dark chocolate in all of its chocolate candies. No agonizing decisions between “milk” chocolate and dark chocolate are required.

Blose created the light-dark blend at the urging of her late husband, and it seems to effectively bridge the divide between light-chocolate enthusiasts and dark-chocolate lovers, she said.

Let’s hear more from this week’s Daytonian of the Week, in her own words:

Tell me how Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe came about. 

I was making chocolate in my home, friends were interested in it, and wanted to start giving it as gifts. When a space opened next to a small gift shop that was selling my chocolate I decided to give my own shop a try! 

What are some of the challenges in keeping a business such as your chocolate shop operating and thriving for 35 years? 

Any challenges we faced over the years were overcome with the things that are very important to us: excellent customer service, quality products still made all by hand — each piece — just like when I started in my home. Also becoming a family business added appeal to our operation. 

What are some of the favorite places you and your family like to go to eat in the Dayton area? 

Sea Jax Tavern, Doubleday’s Grill & Tavern and Archer’s Tavern are all favorites, among many others! 

In this 2014 photo, the founder of Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe, Betty Blose (left), stands with her son Marshall Blose and Laura Blose in the family business located in the Cross Pointe Center. FILE PHOTO BY JIM WITMER

 What’s your guilty pleasure — beyond all of the delicious items that are on Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe’s shelves? 

Potato chips and donuts! 

What inspires you about Dayton? 

The spirit and pride of the people is what inspires me about Dayton.  

What do you see in Bellbrook Chocolate Shoppe’s future, and in the future of Dayton?

The growth of BBCS is, in good part, a result of our presence at the 2nd Street Market in downtown Dayton. My son, Marshall, has met so many new people at the Market and been able to introduce them to our chocolate and shortbread cookies.

We always say we just need to get a sample in their mouth and they will be hooked! They love the venue downtown, and then they venture out to Centerville to check out our where all the chocolate is made at our shop!