Chef / Philosophy

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SALT opened in 2009 in the historic site of Tom’s Tavern. Local artists came together to reconstruct a beautiful building that remains a Boulder gem. Chef Bradford Heap and Designer Carol Vilate created SALT in true bistro style, a warm neighborhood restaurant. The menu reflects this mind-set: simple, elegant and savory. The philosophy of SALT is that flavor is paramount and the best food travels the shortest distance from farm to table. We source local organic produce from local farms. We are a 99% GMO free kitchen. We proudly call our farmers our friends!

Our beef is pasture raised, humanely treated, fed grass or non GMO grain. Our fish is from non endangered, wild populations. Materials used to design SALT are 100% recycled and made by local artisans. Vilate used local resources to re-design almost everything in the restaurant. Its interior was cleverly constructed from recycled and reclaimed materials, much from the original building. The “chefs of the bar” offer a daring and fun selection from our “make your own cocktail element” program, launching SALT into a new age of being the architect of your own entertainment with seasonal ingredients. Additionally, wines are sourced intercontinentally, offering guests a refreshing array of choices, from classic profiles to avant garde selections.

Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with Salt.

Bradford Heap Family PhotoBRADFORD HEAP


Classically trained at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, Bradford Heap is a true example of “do what you love.” After graduation, he worked at L’Orangerie in Los Angeles and in San Francisco in the wine country with Gary Danko. He then traveled to France and Italy to train in the Michelin three-star kitchens of Alain Ducasse, Georges Blanc and Carlo Cioni. Here, Brad sharpened his skills and learned the nuances of French and Italian cooking.

His time in Europe left a deep impression on him. He has embraced the way European chefs procure and prepare the freshest possible ingredients of the region and the season. Bradford was also the successful chef/owner of the highly Zagat-rated Full Moon Grill and Chautauqua Dining Hall. After selling his interest in both in 2006, he purchased the existing Le Chantecler to create COLTERRA. In September 2009, he opened SALT in the old Tom’s Tavern location in Boulder. Bradford’s latest culinary endeavor is Wild Standard, moored next door to SALT, WS is a globe-trotting seafood expedition born of earth stewardship, culinary mastery, and love. Named Westword’s 2016 Best Seafood Restaurant. Also boasting a private watery lounge in the heart of downtown Boulder. Crystal blue ocean floor and a full bar… unique and intimate. The Pearl Dive is a perfect private event dining venue.

With sixteen years of experience as a chef Bradford’s talent and reputation have secured a loyal following in and around the Front Range. His passion for cooking and delighting his customers is contagious. Heap says: “In my cooking I like to look at the intrinsic qualities of the main ingredients, and do what I can to highlight the flavors. I believe that superior taste begins at the farm and am always trying to expand our network of regional growers and purveyors. I try to make good food a celebration of life; it’s meant to be enjoyed with good friends, good wine and good conversation.”



Carol Vilate is the creative designer behind the sustainable, beautiful and welcoming atmosphere of Tom’s Tavern/SALT. She is also the wife of Chef Bradford Heap, and mother of their thirteen year old twins, Colter and Maryn. Vilate is an artist, and self proclaimed “salvager”. When she and Bradford made the decision to build SALT, they walked in together as a family team with a dual punch-list. He would attend to the food service and she would be in charge of the redesign. There would be no 6 figure remodel or high-end agency in this endeavor. “At one point, the entire back of the building was dirt, that was daunting. Lots of people who care about us advised us to ‘run away!’ Instead, we fastened our seatbelts and carefully held our goals in the foreground of our daily tasks:

1. Keep the spirit of Tom’s alive.
2. Shore up the walls.
3. Make it magically happen without spending much money.
4. Realize our long standing dream.
5. Give Boulder a new place they could proudly call home.
6. Remember to feed the twins!

All content © 2018 : SALT | Bradford Heap Restaurants | Boulder, Co .