One entre was not edible. Service staff was poorly informed but may have been new. Manager tried to make it all well and did a good job. But based on quality of food, will not return.
Six of us dined at Isa's Bistro on a Saturday evening. We had a very attentive and helpful waiter, and we greatly enjoyed our meals. Our one disappointment was the lack of moderately priced wines.
Super service by waiter, excellent food and reasonable prices
Very cool place with good food and great service but way too loud to have any kind of conversation.
Top notch French food in a sophisticated environment! A wonderful addition to Asheville's dining scene. Highly recommend! It's wonderful!
Kevin our waiter was awesome. Food was very good. Would go back.
Fantastic meal!!! Loved everything about it!!
The food at Isra’s was exceptional, the service beyond expectations. I was surprised there were not many people there but it was early. Fine restaurant!
Food was excellent and the service impeccable! Would highly recommend if you appreciate fine culinary dining.
We had a very nice experience at Isa's ... although the food was a tad expensive, it was worth the price!
I ate here a few years ago, during my last trip to Asheville, and really enjoyed it. Our waiter explained that they have recently redone the menu to position themselves as a French bistro. Presumably they weren't drawing well (Asheville is full of really great restaurants, and it must be a struggle to compete at the high end), or fusion is falling out of grace.
The atmosphere is trendy, with multiple seating areas within a large space. This helps keep the noise level comfortable (although nothing can insulate you from a family with one or more undisciplined children). Pleasant, but typical of nearly all the downtown restaurants. Our waiter was charming and helpful, but not obtrusive. Very pleased with the service.
We started with calamari, based on his recommendation. It was served over a delectable blend of piquant vegedibles. Unfortunately the calamari itself was disappointing. A little greasy, not crisp enough.
My companion chose the duck and it was superb. Slow cooked, tender and moist, with a lovely presentation. I opted for venison tips. Venison is tricky to do well, and Isa's did it well. I ordered it medium rare, which really is a challenge, since venison is so highly vascularized it is a challenge to cook it right. I tip my had to the chef for a very good job. Unfortunately, it was accompanied with a baby spinach blend, with pine nuts, tiny morsels of apple. It could have been lovely, but it was so salty it was inedible. We hypothesized an absent minded chef kept forgetting whether or not he/she had remembered to add the salt, and kept adding more.
Overall, I would say they got the important things right, but the experience was tainted by a few disappointing fails. I give the high marks because they got the challenging things right. But...
Excellent and responsive service, excellent food.
( please bring back smashed fingerling potatoes)
The food and drinks were enjoyable as was the atmosphere. What I didn't realize was the fact that this is a hotel restaurant and unfortunately the prices were reflective of that. As a local, there are other French restaurants in Asheville with better price points and you don't have to sacrifice food quality.
We dined prior to a symphony performance. We made the reservation at 6, since the show started at 8. They started to get really busy with what appeared to be a pre-symphony crowd, and we didn't get our meals until 7:15. This gave us 15 minutes to eat before we had to leave to walk to the theater. We must have waited at least 30 minutes for our dinners to arrive. In addition, they were out of the bottle of wine we ordered. The food was disappointing. On the cheese plate, 3 out of the 4 had practically the same flavor. And the bistro chicken dish was a smoked grilled 1/2 chicken in a braised mixture of onions, potatoes and bacon, which was a weird combination. The chicken should have been braised with the vegetables. We won't return.
Pasta for special was a gummy mess. We didn’t have time for them to fix this as it was Symphony night. No excuse for inability to properly cook and serve pasta, particularly when it is featured as a special. Scallops were not properly seared. How hard is it to sear opposite sides of scallops. Really, people. I have never been thrilled with Isa’ but it has been convenient for the Symphony. We will go elsewhere in the future.
On our last night in Asheville, the staff made us feel welcome. The risotto was excellent.
We tried Isa's for the first time Sunday, the food was delicious. I had duck with cassoulet, hubby got the duck burger and our son had the mushroom mustard chicken sandwich. Everything was tasty and the portions were good. We can't wait to go back.
Excellent service, food was delicious, varied menu, attentive staff, elegant yet casual, exceeded my expectations for a French meal outside of Paris!
All parties enjoyed their food from the wedge salad to the steak povre to the chicken dish and the steak fritts. Sauce on the povre was very good
On the ground floor of the Historic Haywood Hotel. Great location in downtown Asheville with divided dining area from the bar. Valet or street parking. Food was excellent, good wine and local craft beer selection. Our server Arlene was knowledgeable, attentive without being intrusive, but was corporate and not heart felt in her conversations. Relax Arlene. Overall a great experience. We will return.
We ate there on a Friday night - it was a girls weekend in Asheville. The restaurant, while not empty, was VERY quiet and not very busy, despite being a large space. The food was quite good, and the staff was helpful and friendly, but there was just no vibe going on - no buzz, no atmosphere.
The filet and fingerling potatoes were amazing! I will definitely return.
Had eaten here 2 years ago and decided to try again as they added "French" to Isa's Bistro. Mussels and steak tartare appetizers were excellent as was the chicken main dish. I would have given the overall and food ratings 5 stars but the chicken sandwich was requested with dressing on the side and they put it on so back it went. By the time it returned others had finished. Also I think the chef has too heavy a hand with salt as we were drinking water all night. We will return but will ask that no extra salt be added to the food.
Mussels supper yummy. Service started off great but went down hill. Not sure we would go again not because it was bad but just not as good as prices and asheville has so many tasty choices.
The restaurant is right downtown. The staff were very courteous and quick. Good Atmosphere for a date. The menu was limited but food was excellent.
Dinner was excellent. Our waiter was outstanding. Excellent choice!!
Everything was very nice. The food was wonderful and the service was great.
Perfect spot for dinner on a rainy Saturday night in the heart of downtown Asheville. We arrived early, but the hostess was able to seat us right away. The calamari appetizer was delicious as was the risotto with figs and wild mushrooms. I found it a tad dry, but incredibly flavorful. The service was excellent as well. Thank you!
It seems eating out always has its ups and downs. The onion/cheese tart with accompanying salad is always delicious as are the soups. My husband tried the duck burger and didn't enjoy the consistency or flavor compared to the beef burger that was formerly on the menu. The fingerling potatoes are always delicious. My friend had the chicken provencal special and enjoyed it very much. I tried the Risotto with added shrimp and was very disappointed. The Risotto did not have the creaminess associated with it and was totally tasteless and other than the shrimp I added, would have been just a plate of rice. Actually, I felt the $7 charge for the added shrimp was not worth the cost. The orange creme brulee and petit four/truffle desserts were delicious.
I came for the Bouillabaisse. Too many potatoes, not enough broth. Salmon was excellent, though. Our seats were in the dark. Candles or a lamp would have warmed the booth--instead, we felt like the power was out. It was a birthday celebration, but it didn't feel happy or festive in the least.
Excellent meal, fresh risotto w/ salmon. Friends enjoyed their meal and one who was gluten free was well p,eased. Husband really liked his meal 🥘
I had the risotto special and it was not very good. There were more onions than risotto.
Arlene did a great job assuring that we were well cared for. Food was very good. We will return!!
Great, friendly service and delicious food. Great place to dine prior to a concert at the civic center.
Service was great . Greeter, server and management were friendly and the meal was Times very well .
Best filet we’ve had since moving to AVL. The rack of lamb was also perfect . Beautiful plates . True art
Skimpy Martinis ... frozen French fries being passed off as pommes frites. Really? Okay restaurant, but just not a French bistro.
Most of the dishes ordered by our party of six were very good, but two of ordered the NY Strip Au Poivre, and we were both very disappointed. The steaks were full of gristle and difficult to chew, although the flavor was good. As we spoke about the meal later, each of us who ordered the steaks had thought about sending ours back, but decided not to interrupt the meal. Our server Nick did a great job.
Made a reservation to celebrate a special occasion as they advertised they were participating in our local Restaurant Week. When we were seated we asked for the restaurant week specials (3 course dinner for $35 ) and were told that theirs was a crostini appetizer at a $2 discount from the regular price!! What??!? That was how they were participating in Restaurant Week - seriously??! Needless to say, we felt that that was a very deceptive practice. Ended up leaving and walked to another downtown restaurant (Posana’s) where we enjoyed a fabulous 3 course meal for $35. Won’t return to Isa’s and definitely won’t recommend to any of our circle of friends and/or extended families. Very poor choice on their part to say they participated in Restaurant t Week and then offer a very minor discount on a single appetizer. Why bother??
Isa's has marvelously authentic French cuisine with the freshest local ingredients. An imaginative and reasonably-priced wine list compliments the dishes. The service is impeccable.
The food and service was excellent. We had the duck burger special and the lamb chops and shared the plates. Both dishes were outstanding. We had lots of excellent meals in Ashville but this was the best.