Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Restaurant Impossible - Rising Sun Bistro Update

Rising Sun Bistro Restaurant ImpossibleTonight on Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine is going to Rising Sun Bistro in Kalispell, Montana which recently moved locations from Whitefish, Montana.   The restaurant is facing many problems, such as: a chaotic kitchen, an uninspired decor, $500,000 worth of debt, and three owners that do not get along.  As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Rising Sun Bistro to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews and comments are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Positive Reviews:

  • "Love the fact that they use local and organic food! Usually busy, but not a long wait. Have great lunch, and french press coffee!"
  • "Great little spot and a treasure of a find in Kalispell. This french bistro reminded me of my stay in France, the decor, the food. Everything was good. Prices and food are great."
  • "Very impressed with the food! Big fresh burger! Beet salad just okay. And hopefully the champagne for mimosas improves :) we'll be back!!"
  • "I came here twice during my stay in Kalispell, once for lunch and again for breakfast. Both meals were very good.  For lunch I had the pate sandwich, which was rich and delicious, with a side beet salad and a lemonade. I absolutely LOVED the beet salad, and the fact that they offered something other than the standard chips or green salad option. Our customer service was also superb."
  • "The management has made some needed changes to this place.  The food was great and the staff was friendly attentive.  I would recommend eating here to any of my friends."

 Negative Reviews:

  • "The interior is very nice since the "RE-DO". However our server did not know the menu and had to return to the kitchen to get answers for our five questions. The wait for our food was very long….There is a charge for separate checks! (come on!!)"
  • "For the most part the RI treatment was positive but on the day we were there the service was pretty poor. It took quite a while for us to get menus and there was very little eye contact with our servers throughout the meal - they were heads down and didn't seem happy to be at work…..So would we go there again? Maybe. But we wouldn't go out of our way to go there again."
  • "Sadly not only had things not changed the restaurant looks worse and was even more uncomfortable then before…. From the tasteless chicken salad to the rude wait staff to the dead flowers and plants everywhere the terrible service and extremely long wait, it was nothing short of terrible.… I fear this lovely building will soon be empty yet again."
  • "The service is exactly the same, very in attentive and slow.  :-(  Don't let the lure of the old location make you hungry... our past experience was not so good!"
Reviews taken from Yelp, Tripadvisor, Foursquare


It seems as if the reviews are mixed for the Rising Sun Bistro, and that the customers like the fresh, organic food.   However, it seems that service is still lacking with many complaints about it. 

The Rising Sun Bistro moved into the spot that was once Knead CafĂ©, a restaurant that served breakfast and brunch.   Rising Sun Bistro also moved from touristy area of Whitefish to Kalispell, so there is a different clientele.   The higher priced food in Whitefish seemed more well received due to the customers being tourists, rather than locals as they are in Kalispell.

Rising Sun Bistro had a restaurant inspection in June of 2012, in which they received a C+ grade, which is ‘poor to marginal sanitation.’  They must display this grade on their door.  The reason for the C+ grade were:

  • Grade card not posted on door
  • Inadequate heating of food
  • Holding equipment not adequate for maintaining temperature
  • Potentially hazardous food not thawed by approved methods
  • Food employee hair not restrained
  • Sanitizer at inadequate strength
  • Non –food contact equipment not maintained clean
More details of the inspection and violations can be found here (page 13 of 17, or 6 of 8 if you are looking at the header).  We will have to see if they have taken care of these issues when Robert visits tonight.

UPDATE 11/2013 - The Rising Sun Bistro is listed for sale for $499,000 -> Link

*Visit Our Restaurant Impossible Update Page to see all Restaurant Impossible Updates, and which restaurants are open, closed, or have been sold.  Also Like Us on Facebook  and  Follow Us on Twitter 


  1. This is a good companion piece to the show - wish that every "makeover" program had a similar after-report for folks to check out after watching the broadcast. Good job. 

  2. Hi
    I need information how i get in contacto with the chef.
    I have a friend de the have a Rest Bar and she is strugging and she is bling out of business. Is in NY near one of the famoust Bittali rest.

  3. What I think sucks is these pages on the updates. They should have the pictures of the before and after and the employee's and maybe a little about the problems and what was solved. Because I have watched many episodes and cant remember all the stuff just by the name. I remember more by what it looked like and the faces of those employees. So i have no bad comment on this particular restaurant but I don't know what the differences are. They should have an option up top also to get from restaurant to restaurant instead of having to close out and go to each individual on Google.  

  4.  You can click on the labels under the post and it will bring them all up.  Just click on the Restaurant Impossible label.  If you are looking for a specific one, there is a search site feature on the right hand side at the top.

  5. I love this show and Robert Irvine....however what is the deal with the owner/manager?She has had the same outfit on.... and apparently the same hair...ick for the 3 days.  Please take a shower.

  6. And by the way... PLEASE... buy the chef BRA.  Or at least one that fits. Good Lord.

  7. Go to foodnetwork/ri to nominate the restaurant.

  8. Maybe I am am intellectual geek but the first thing I thought of when I saw this episode was the name and its connection to France. The "House of the Rising Sun" was a popular french
    folk song believed to have come from the 1700's-era and it told the sad story of what kind of life a french girl can expect to end up with if she chooses the easy path of prostitution in a brothel. It lamented the choice as one that leads inevitably to homelessness and death after the years of partying take their toll on women's looks. She has no value save attractiveness and without it she ends up with nothing. Who wants to celebrate that?

    Couple the weirdness of the name with bad service and poor food and in Montana? High-minded Christians in rural America might judge before even entering.

  9. They closed their doors.