Dining Spotlight

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Salad Makers

Salad Makers

Turning Over a New Leaf

Salad Makers originally opened in the Streets of Brentwood in 2014. After a few changes in ownership over the years, Ryan and Marisa Richardson took over in December 2023 with the mission of providing a healthy option for residents while also taking advantage of the incredible local ingredients and resources. “We want to have produce that people can rely on for being fresh,” said Ryan. “We also wanted to bring a new vibe by greeting visitors and letting them know that we’re happy they’re here. It seems simple but a lot of places miss the mark and unfortunately have absent owners. With our decades of experience in the industry, we were ready to add that spark to Salad Makers.”

Ryan and Marisa have made quite a few updates and changes to the original Salad Makers menu, like adding a “pick two” selection that offers a sandwich and salad combo. “I’ve never seen so many salads move that quickly in my entire life,” said Ryan. “It really goes back to the freshness and the product offering. The lettuce is coming from Salinas every couple of days.” Ryan and Marisa also plan to add seasonal salads as different, more complex ingredients become available and they can add some of the produce that Brentwood is known for. The sandwich options have been upgraded to include a ribeye sandwich, tuna melt, BLT, and paninis. “I was never a panini guy,” said Ryan. “Having owned a bagel shop, all I knew were bagel sandwiches, but these are incredible.” They have also added an extensive soup menu. “We took a long time to figure out good soups, and they fly off the shelves. Hot weather, cold weather, people just like soup. We purchase the base and upgrade it by adding our own fresh ingredients.”

Part of what draws in new customers is the visual appeal of an establishment, and Ryan and Marisa have taken that into consideration, updating the entire aesthetic of the restaurant. Where it seemed similar to a cafeteria previously, the new and improved Salad Makers offers a much warmer, more inviting atmosphere with a farm to table approach. “We also plan to revamp the outside,” said Marisa. “We don’t want people to just come to lunch here because they were already shopping around the mall. We want them to come here to eat because we are the destination.” The duo is hoping that visitors want to come, grab something to eat, and stay awhile, hanging out with family and friends and perhaps, eventually, enjoying a glass of wine with your salad. “We want to be more casual than needing a reservation, but with upgraded outdoor seating, we hope to add to the quaint experience which will be especially nice in the warmer months.”

The Richardsons are nowhere near done revamping. “We truly just want to add to the experience of The Streets.” The couple has been listening closely to what the customers want and are making changes that hopefully excite the public. “The restaurant is ten years old, and it’s a lot of people’s first time here, which blows my mind.” With that clean slate, the Richardsons are able to provide a top tier experience with the best possible customer service. “Ryan has been in the industry his whole life, and he’s a people person by nature,” said Marisa. “He’s genuinely interested in getting to know you and hear how your day’s going. We want you to know that your business matters; you’re not just the next dollar.”

After running a successful business in Brentwood for decades and deciding it was finally time to pass that experience onto someone else, Ryan couldn’t help but dive back into the dining industry and keep his offerings in his home town. “My boys are the biggest reason why I’ve always wanted to stay in Brentwood,” said Ryan. “After 20 years of working weekends, I am finally able to coach them and add that new dynamic to my life. This transition into doing what I know and love to do, but also having time with my family, was the most important reason why I’m still here. I tried traveling, but it’s tough. This is home. We both grew up here and love to see everyone we grew up with and now their families. It’s come full circle; it’s definitely multi-generational.”

Phone: (925) 240-2835
Adress: 2565 Sand Creek Road, Suite 100, Brentwood, CA 94513
Website: www.saladmakers.hrpos.heartland.us

Photos by: Sara Jean Photography  



Brentwood is one of the fastest-growing cities in the nine-county Bay Area and offers a strategic location that connects: the SF Bay Area, Central Valley, Tri-Valley, and Sacramento Delta.


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