Oberlin IGA: Quality you can count on
Since day one as owner-operator of the Oberlin IGA, Leo Braido has been focused on making the store the best it can be.
“Quality is our first priority always but we are very competitively priced
as well,” Braido said.
Since purchasing the store in 2014, the store has received more than $750,000 in new equipment, lighting, decor and other enhancements to the building itself. Next on the list is the replacement of all the refrigerated cases in the dairy department, which will occur in late September.
Braido was fortunate a couple years after purchasing the store to meet Joe Kokinda, founder of Pro Green Technologies and Professional HVAC in nearby Avon Lake, and his family company has been the exclusive vendor partner of Oberlin IGA since then. Kokinda’s company does all upgrades,
installations and repairs on all the HVAC and refrigerated equipment at the store and, with their guidance and expertise, the store has become one of the most energy efficient in the state.
“There is no way we would have been able to make the amount of progress with energy efficiency and our overall refrigeration-HVAC system without Joe’s expertise and guidance,” Braido said.
The new dairy cases will be from Purecold Refrigeration, whose focus is energy efficiency and lower carbon footprint. “Every improvement I have made in the store is focused on being aligned
with the city of Oberlin’s desire to be carbon neutral by 2050,” Braido said.
“My hope is to also install new refrigerated deli cases and a new hot food case as well in 2020.”
Oberlin IGA is at 331 East Lorain Street and open seven days a week. Current interim hours during the COVID-19 pandemic are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day, and a senior shopping hour is also available 6 to 7 a.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays. The store’s phone number is (440)774-6351.
The store features a large selection of local, natural, gluten-free and specialty foods as well as one of the area’s largest selections of beer and wine. Large produce and meat departments, a deli-bakery, conventional grocery, dairy, frozen and health and beauty care items round out the offering.
“The meat department is one of our largest area of growth,” Braido said. It features certified Angus beef, all-natural pork, all-natural Gerber fresh chicken, fresh and frozen seafood, and store-made pork casing sausage.
“We’ve got some many great customers here at the store who support us day in and day out and for that I am very thankful,” Braido said. The store was again awarded fivestar status with IGA USA, which is given annually to retailers who qualify under the strict criteria of the program.
“We do what we do here at my store for our customers not for any awards or accolades and that will always be the case while I own and operate the store,” Braido said.
As seen in the Chronicle Telegram - Featured in Today's Family - July 15, 2020