Asheville, North Carolina

About Us


About Us

Chiesa (Italian for church) is a quaint Italian restaurant featuring generations of family recipes, house-made pasta, and local ingredients. Located in the historic Montford neighborhood, Chiesa (pronounced kee-ay-sa) is housed in a building that has been at the center of the community for over one hundred years, serving as the local grocery store, then as a church, and since 2014, the neighborhood Italian restaurant. Our friendly staff welcomes all guests as family, providing a warm and comfortable atmosphere for both inside and patio dining (when weather permits).

Newton Clark, owner of Chiesa.

It is not surprising that “Divine intervention” and fortuitous timing would lead Chiesa’s current owner, Newton Clark, to Chiesa’s pew lined interior in the fall of 2017. He was in search of a special place to call his own, and the founding owners, Melissa and Robert Willingham, were in search of a special person to continue their restaurant’s traditions. Within months of meeting, Newton received the Willingham’s final blessing. By mid November 2017, the staff welcomed Newton into the family fold as its new owner.

Anointed into the food industry over 30 years ago in Atlanta, Georgia, it would seem as though Newton was always predestined to land on the front steps of Chiesa. Through the decades he has held every position from dishwasher to Manager in some of Atlanta’s finest (and he confesses, not so fine) restaurants. Most recently, in 2012,  he was a key member of the management team here in Asheville that opened Chestnut. During his four years as their manager, they were consistently named one of the top 10 restaurants, and voted “Best Business Lunch in WNC” by the Mountain Express.

As he looks forward to the years to come at Chiesa, it is his hope that you will find your dining experiences to be more than just a meal, perhaps more of a shared memory and an ongoing tradition for the entire family.~


~Food for the soul~~

152 Montford Avenue, at the corner of Montford and Chestnut Avenues.

Open Daily for dinner 5 pm – 10 pm, reservations recommended.

Location & Hours

152 Montford Avenue
Asheville, North Carolina 28801
(828) 552-3110 (Directions)

Open Daily for dinner 5pm – 10pm


Click here to make a reservation.

For same day reservations made after 5pm, please call us at
(828) 552-3110.