#37 of 26 Boone Restaurants

Joy Bistro

Enjoy a Five-Star Dining Experience at Joy Bistro in Boone
Local Expert's Rating:
4.5 / 5
The Bottom Line:

There’s food and then there’s culinary art. Expect the latter at the remarkable Joy Bistro in Boone. In addition to a truly exceptional meal, you’ll also enjoy an inviting ambiance and five-star service during your fine dining experience at this hidden gem in the Smokies.

- The SmokyMountains.com Local Expert Team

If you’re looking for an exquisite fine dining experience where the extraordinary food is matched by both the service and the ambiance, look no further than Joy Bistro in Boone.

Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or want to make an ordinary day a truly special one on your visit to the Smokies, there’s no better way to do so than with an unforgettable meal at Joy Bistro.

While you’ve got many wonderful dining options to choose from during your time in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Joy Bistro holds a special place in our hearts. Outstanding French cuisine, consummate service, and an intimate atmosphere make Joy Bistro a place we’ll eagerly return to again and again.

Don’t be fooled by Joy Bistro’s humble strip mall location sandwiched between Jersey Mike’s and Big Lots. While it may not look like much from the outside, a phenomenal experience awaits you inside. From the second you walk into the soothing, richly-decorated interior and receive a sincere greeting from the host, you’ll feel like you were transported to a classic Parisian bistro.

This feeling will continue throughout your meal. Owned and operated by husband-wife team chef Melissa Claude, a graduate of the Cordon Bleu Institute of San Francisco, and restaurant manager Gary Claude, Joy Bistro is a labor of love—and it shows. Every detail is meticulously attended to, including the menu which is inspired by the seasonal harvests of local farmers.

Speaking of the Joy Bistro menu, it’s constantly changing, including evolving specials crafted by Chef Melissa.

A few favorites from our visit include the following:

Firecracker Shrimp
The Bistro’s signature appetizer, this succulent shrimp dish is warm, cheesy, and impossibly delicious.

PEI Mussels
In a flavorful Madeira wine broth featuring spicy sausage, leeks, and roasted red peppers, these melt-in-your-mouth mollusks are a must-have.

Bartlett Pear Salad
This sublime salad showcases a perfect balance of flavors thanks to an organic spring mix, sweet candied pecans, smokey blue cheese, roasted bacon, and a bright, refreshing shallot vinaigrette.

NY Strip Steak
The classic, consummate French bistro steak is highlighted by a seasonal veggie medley, creamy garlic mashed potatoes, compound butter, and caramel jus.

Mountain Trout
A truly unique dish featuring pan-seared trout fresh from North Carolina waters served over a tasty potato-bacon corn hash and wilted spinach. And did we happen to mention the sweet and spicy jalapeño walnut cream sauce?

In addition to an impeccably cultivated menu of starters, salads, entrées, and desserts, Joy Bistro also offers a cocktail lineup featuring signature beverages, chic martinis, and an extensive selection of Portuguese ports.

Whether you’re craving something classic and comforting or more innovative fare, Joy Bistro delivers delight at every turn.

Insider Tips:
-While many Boone restaurants lean toward a more laid-back vibe, Joy Bistro has more of a high-end feel. While it’s not fancy, formal, or fussy, sandals and hiking apparel may not be appropriate.
-Joy Bistro is not a “fast casual” establishment. As such, everything is handcrafted and made to savor. Plan on spending up to two hours for your meal. (If you tend to get “hangry” while waiting for your food, have a light snack before you go. Just be sure to leave room for your meal!)
-Because locals and visitors alike flock to Joy Bistro, book your reservation early to avoid disappointment.