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“Something went wrong” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Mela Indian Restaurant

Mela Indian Restaurant
70 N Lexington Ave, Asheville, NC 28801-2823 (Downtown Asheville)
+1 828-225-8880
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Ranked #37 of 644 Restaurants in Asheville
Price range: $11 - $30
Cuisines: Indian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Doing business, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Buffet, Late Night, Dessert
Neighborhood: Downtown Asheville
Description: Located on Lexington Avenue in the heart of downtown Asheville, Mela Indian Restaurant specializes in North and South Indian food made from scratch with local and organic ingredients. We are certified by the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project for using ingredients produced by local farmers. Come sample our lunch buffet which has a range of delicious options including chicken and naan cooked in our authentic tandoor oven, raita prepared with house-made yogurt, and seasonal vegetarian specialties. The atmosphere at dinner is warm and intimate; specials include such favorites such as pistachio lamb and spinach and goat cheese naan which are baked in our genuine tandoor oven. Mela welcomes children and offers a kids menu. In addition to dine-in, we also offer catering services. We have many options available - please contact us for more details. At Mela, our goal is to provide our community with a taste of traditional Indian cuisine. We hope you'll come and join us soon!
Okemos, Michigan
Top Contributor
156 reviews 156 reviews
96 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
74 helpful votes 74 helpful votes
“Something went wrong”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013 via mobile

We got our salad then waited an hour to get the food the table next to us ordered. We told the waitress who whisked that food away placed it in front of the next table and brought us a second plate of crackers for our "inconvenience". After another very long wait and our request for our food the waitress said there was a new person in the kitchen and he was slow. That didn't seem to be a problem for other diners. Waitress was non apologetic but did discount the bill. The food was good. Service not good.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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367 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Love it !!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2013 via mobile

One of the best Indian meals we have had and we are from India. We come here every year when we visit Asheville but I must say this was the best meal we have had here. Whoever or whatever you are doing please keep doing. The flavors blended so well . Everything was so well balanced from the chutneys to the prawn vindaloo and the biryani ...outstanding!!!!!
I think the idea of incorporating an Indian touch in the cocktails and after dinner drinks is also ingenious . Keep up the great work . We will be back

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Union Bridge, Maryland
Top Contributor
121 reviews 121 reviews
94 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 61 cities Reviews in 61 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
“The Total Package”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2013

Mela presents the total package -- food, ambiance, and service -- that's rare in an Indian restaurant. The buffet dishes where uniformly fresh and with some interesting variants on the standard buffet fare including a nicely done beet shorba soup and a potato and kale dish ala aloo saag.

The ambiance is kind of laid back urban hipster -- nice curvy wooden counters, organic colors, etc. The service was easy going yet attentive. At 10 bucks, I don't think Mela can be topped. This review applies to the lunch buffet only and based on 1 visit. I have a feeling if I lived in the area, I'd be a regular at Mela.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Gates Mills, OH
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“"Meh" for Mela”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

My husband and I dined at Mela while visiting Asheville for the first time.

We've both lived in London and adore a good authentic Indian meal, so we decided to give Mela a try based on the outstanding reviews it's received.

The restaurant has a great atmosphere. It's modern, sophisticated and open -- a contrast to the usual neighborhood Indian places we're used to. It wasn't very crowded and we were seated immediately.

We reviewed the menu which seemed quite limited. There seemed to be some confusion as to who was covering our table. One server stopped by and took our drink order but declined to take our order for a starter. Eventually, another server stopped by to take our order. When we ordered the calamari starer, she put on her pouty face and said they were out of calamari. (This was before 7 pm!) She encouraged us to try some dough-based starter instead but we declined and ordered our entrees. We are accustomed to having some degree of flexibility in the level of spiciness in our Indian food....typically mild, hot, hotter, hottest...with some of our favorite restaurants. A couple even offer to bring us curry paste to mix in with the sauce if we want it hotter. My husband was craving seafood, couldn't get calamari, so he ordered the Shrimp Vindaloo and but didn't want it excessively spicy. The server said they couldn't modify the hotness and suggested he order a yogurt-based side to dilute the sauce (at an additional cost). He did as suggested. I ordered Chicken Tikka Masala. We also ordered nan.

My Chicken Tikka Masala was less than mild, not very warm and served over what could have passed for Uncle Ben's rice. My husband's Shrimp Vindaloo was also served lukewarm, but it was far too spicy for his taste. The addition of the yogurt side only served to make the dish colder. The nan was decent.

Interestingly, the way the meal was served was also inconsistent with how we've come to expect Indian food to be served -- i.e. family style for dishes to be shared. It was served like two separate entrees.

The food was mediocre and the service was uninspired. We will not dine here again.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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north carolina
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“terrific”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

terrific food, atmosphere. exceptional service. large, grand space... great for larger parties. the lunch buffet is the best deal in town.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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