Being home to a restaurant where you can get fresh, high quality seafood probably isn’t what most would expect a landlocked state such as Colorado to be able to boast. And yet, here in Boulder, we have just that at Wild Standard Land and Sea on Pearl Street, brainchild of venerable chef of local SALT fame Bradford Heap. Having originally opened in September 2015, Wild Standard has recently gone through a revamping that has resulted in even more incredible seafood dishes and has evolved the dining experience for hungry Boulderites looking to dine “Under the Sea”-style.
Chef Heap originally opened Wild Standard with the mission to be a gathering place for families, foodies, and friends, honoring their huge focus on sustainability and only serving humanely-raised food in its simplest, most clean and delicious form. While the restaurant made a name for itself as a must-visit location, the dim-sum, interactive, cart-run style of dining that had been in the original plan was proving to be a bit more cumbersome and less logistically sound than imagined. The team felt that the style of dining was taking away from the experience of the unbelievable flavors of the food. Returning to a more traditional dining experience with less frills and logistics, now both the kitchen and restaurant goers alike can focus on the pure and simple quality of the food.
The revamp at Wild Standard has encompassed both their menu and overall concept. Still highlighting their emphasis on sustainability, a subject on which Chef Heap’s passion is palpable, the new Wild Standard menu focuses on the freshest of seasonal ingredients. Dining at Wild Standard as a guest of Chef Derek Baril is a farm-to-table experience where dishes are simple and, with interesting and unique flavor combinations, all of those flavors truly have the chance to sing. Ingredients shine with unique supporting characters and everything, from the raw bar to the entrees to the desserts, are a treat.
The interior of the restaurant will likewise transport you to your maritime happy place, making you forget that you’re just miles away from mountains, not the ocean. With rich wooden beams in the dining room and décor made up of 95% recyclable materials, it’s a warm and comfortable space. The downstairs Pearl Dive cellar and private event space makes you feel as if you’ve gone below deck in a modern and fashionable ship cabin, and it’s likewise a great space to lounge and enjoy all that Wild Standard has to offer. From its unique beverage program, featuring a huge selection of sustainable wines and cocktails named after famous, influential women (the Alice Waters, featuring celery and elderflower flavors, is amazing!), to its private event opportunities and more, Wild Standard is a destination for clean, flavorful eating.
Be sure to stop by Wild Standard the next time you’re craving fresh sea fare and experience the new menu and concept that has made it even more of a culinary destination here in Boulder.