“You can see the vision. Cosmetically, it’s almost there,” says Robert Cantelon, co-owner of the newly expanded Arbor Farms. The natural foods supermarket has rounded the corner in the Boulevard Plaza shopping center, taking the former Mattress and Futon Shoppe space, facing Stadium Blvd.

They’ve used the additional 4,500 square feet for an expanded deli with prepared foods and an espresso bar. “There’s room to step back and look at what’s for sale,” Cantelon says, stepping back himself to demonstrate how it’s possible to scan the entire deli case at once.

The deli was always popular, but it was tucked off an aisle in the main store–with the result that it, rather than the cash registers, was often the store’s bottleneck. Customers had to bob and weave to catch partial glimpses of what was on offer, and half a dozen customers could logjam the whole aisle. Problem solved–there’s now a Whole Foods-like spaciousness to the entire department. In early October Cantelon was working on making the salad bar operational, stocking a few empty display cases, and getting the last bits of drywall finished and painted.

Behind the scenes, “it’s still a major headache, like all construction,” he confides. The entire kitchen was being rebuilt, though one of the most important elements was up and running: the “blast cooler.” “Anything cooked has to be chilled to forty-one degrees within six hours or it’s unsafe to eat,” Cantelon explains. Home cooks theoretically need to know this too, but shoving that roast chicken in the fridge sometime between now and bedtime will probably do the trick. A rack of roast chickens needs a more powerful solution. The blast cooler has allowed the store to vastly expand its prepared foods section.

Renovations will continue through January and even beyond. “A raw foods and ‘paleo’ foods section is coming; a big new cheese counter; more beer.” Send your kids on a treasure hunt for the bowl of animal crackers–it’s still there, just in a different place. However, with a brand new espresso bar, Arbor Farms no longer offers free coffee to go. Coffee, smoothie, and tea samples are available at the bar, however, and $2 will buy you a cup of RoosRoast Lobster Butter Love with free refill and free Internet at the cafe.

Arbor Farms, 2103 W. Stadium (Boulevard Plaza), 996-8111. Daily 7 a.m.-9 p.m. arborfarms.com