LAKE LINDEN - Between a brand new gas station and a completely revamped deli department, Louie's Super Foods of Lake Linden has seen significant upgrades in the past year.
"We've done a lot," Operations Manager Jason Meneguzzo said. "We couldn't have done this without the support of the community."
Some of the major changes they've made at the Lake Linden store, started with the construction of a Shell self-service gas station in the parking lot. Cash, debit and credit cards are accepted.
Jason Meneguzzo, operations manager of Louie’s Super Foods in Lake Linden, stands in front of the deli Monday. Along with its traditional hot case, the store’s deli offers a full menu of Hot Stuff food items for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
"We picked Shell because they are by far the highest quality fuel available out there with all the offerings," Jason said, explaining the three available grades of nitrogen-enriched gasoline each contain a cleaning system designed to eliminate gunky buildup. "Having a degree from Ferris State University in automotive technology, I've seen first hand what low-quality, discount fuel can do to engines."
On top of a premium gas program, Shell offers customers a premium diesel program.
"It's called Arctic Shield," Jason said. "It's premium diesel, not just regular low-grade diesel."
The Arctic Shield additive cleans injectors, inhibits corrosion in the engine, improves lubricity, and increases fuel mileage and horsepower.
"At Shell, we make sure you get the most out of every drop," he said.
Customers can take advantage of Shell's gas card program, which offers savings and rewards on gas purchases. The Shell Citi Card offers a 5 percent rebate on all gasoline purchases at any Shell station; while the debit card gives approved customers a 2 cents per gallon discount on fuel purchases. The Shell Fleet Card is also available for business or commercial use.
Additional savings continue inside Louie's. Every Wednesday, customers who purchase $10 or more in gas or diesel receive a free paper product, whether it be paper towel or bath tissue.
"We call it Wacky Wednesday," Jason said. "We've only been doing it for about three weeks, but it's doubled every week so far."
And, any purchase at the pump can land customers a free cup of coffee.
"This is good for when you're on your way to work," he said of the daily special. "You can come in and get free coffee. We have a premium, regular and decaf."
Along with the construction of Shell gas station came the revamping of Louie's deli to offer a quicker, more fresh product. And so came the addition of Hot Stuff foods to Louie's traditional hot case.
The six-page menu features breakfast, lunch and dinner items.
Popular on the breakfast menu are pizzas, burritos, biscuit and croissant sandwiches, to name a few. For lunch, choose from personal pan pizzas, hamburgers, wraps and subs made fresh on homemade bread.
"We have four different breads that we bake fresh daily and we have 13 different subs," Jason said. "We're adding new subs all the time. Our newest one is a seafood sub."
Five dollar footlongs in four different varieties are also available.
For dinner, try the large, 14-inch pizza. Customers can select from a list of specialty pizzas or create their own on regular or thin crust.
Also popular are stuffed cheesy breadsticks, cheesy garlic bread, boneless wings, and buffalo hot wings.
To accompany any meal, Louie's offers a full beverage bar with fountain pop, cappuccino, coffee and iced coffee.
Just before Christmas, Louie's added a large liquor department to both its Lake Linden and Calumet grocery stores. Prior to that, the stores carried wine and beer.
"We have everything you need for a party," he said. "Maybe something for a cold U.P. night to keep you warm ... maybe some brandy."
If there's something Louie's doesn't already carry in the liquor department, customers are encouraged to make requests.
"Just let our cashiers know," he said. "We've been ordering in new items every week."
Customers can also bring their propane tanks to Louie's in Lake Linden for refills.
"We offer the cheapest price in the area - $.79 per pound," Jason said, adding they will be extending their propane services to their Calumet store this spring. "Whether it be a 3-pound, 20-pound- or 100-pound tank, we have the cheapest price around."
Looking ahead, Jason said they recently purchased new produce cases for the Calumet store and hope to have them installed by spring.
"We're throwing out our old, single-shelf cases and putting in new, multi-deck, high-efficiency cases so that we can have more variety," he said. "We're going to more than double our space and variety."
Family owned and operated, Louie's Super Foods has been in business since 1976 and is recognized for its large meat department, fresh produce, deli and bakery.
Jason's grandfather, Louie Meneguzzo, opened the store in downtown Lake Linden, where Quality Hardware is presently located. In the mid-1990s, Jason's father, Louie Meneguzzo took over. Having outgrown the space downtown, the store moved to its M-26 location in 1994.
The Calumet store was purchased in 2002. Overseeing operations at both stores is Jason's brother, Nick Meneguzzo.
In the near future, Louie's Super Foods of Lake Linden will be hosting a grand opening of its Shell gas station.
"Watch for the announcement," Jason said. "I would like to thank our community for the support they've given us. Without them, we wouldn't be able to keep expanding our services to our communities."
Louie's Super Foods is located in Lake Linden on M-26 and in Calumet at 340 4th St.
Shell gas station hours are 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Louie's store hours are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
For more information, call 296-3221 or 337-2311.
Editor's note: This feature is part of a paid advertising package purchased by Louie's Super Foods of Lake Linden and Calumet. Businesses interested in being featured on the Business page may call Yvonne Robillard at 483-2220.