Restaurant News & Reviews

Roaches, dead and alive, shut down 4 Miami-Dade restaurants and get 20 others cited

A statewide look at Florida’s top restaurant violations

Routine, unannounced restaurant inspections ensure food retail establishments are in compliance with state sanitation and food safety procedures. These are the top ten violations found between 2015-16 in Florida restaurant kitchens.
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Routine, unannounced restaurant inspections ensure food retail establishments are in compliance with state sanitation and food safety procedures. These are the top ten violations found between 2015-16 in Florida restaurant kitchens.

Thanksgiving and its leftovers are past. The holidays and visiting relatives are the near future. So, it’s a good time for the Roach Report, taken from recent state restaurant inspections, to let you know which Miami-Dade restaurants were cited for being too buggy.

As usual, we start with the restaurants that got shut down for the day entirely or partially because of roach problems.

▪  China Wok, 9340 SW 56th St., Southwest Miami-Dade — On Oct. 31, there were 20 live roaches and about five dead roaches found behind a reach-in freezer. Also, you can’t overlook the rice bin being soiled inside the container. China Wok got everything together by the next day.

▪  Exquisite Catering by Robert, 1800 NE 150th St., North Miami — Exquisite though the catering may be, these folks got red flagged Nov. 14 with two High Priority violations. The first got them on the Rodent Report. The second was “approximately eight live roaches under cooking equipment in the kitchen area.” They were back in business Nov. 15.

▪  Natural Chicken Grill, 5628 NW 167th St., Miami Gardens — Here’s what the inspector found in the kitchen refrigerator on Nov. 9: 10 live roaches, 20 dead roaches, 200 pieces of roach excrement or droppings. The tomatoes in the hand wash sink probably didn’t help matters, either. Natural Chicken passed the re-inspection.

▪  Tropic Grill, 9700 NW 25th St., Doral — The eatery had 10 total violations, including three High Priority violations on Nov. 1, one of which was “approximately eight live roaches between ceiling and wall in kitchen area.” Other things that give inspectors the Mr. Yuck face are waitresses handling dirty plates, then preparing food without washing hands or washing cooking equipment with only detergent. Tropic straightened up and reopened Nov. 2.

“Administrative Complaint Recommended” means you’re within a sneeze of being shut down and the inspector will be back the next day to make sure you’ve taken care of your problems.

▪  Epy Cafe, 7601 E. Treasure Dr., North Bay Village — One live roach was found under the mop sink, and eight dead ones between the mop sink and the reach-in freezer, but that won’t get you this designation. You might get it if you throw in “empanadas not being held at the proper temperature,” and raw chicken, beef and beans prepared at least the day before without being time stamped.

▪  La Belle Rose Restaurant & Produce, 16689 NE 19th Ave., North Miami Beach — The inspector saw five live roaches, three in the oven, one in the left corner of the cook line and one in the right corner of the cook line, as well as six dead roaches around the cook line.

While they didn’t get closed, check out all the food tossed after Stop Sale orders for food kept at unhealthy temperatures: cooked rice and grits; raw chicken; cooked beef; and cooked chicken.

▪  River Park Hotel & Suites, 100 SE Fourth St., Miami — As for roaches, the inspector saw over 10 small dead roaches inside a storeroom for garbage containers about 50 feet from the kitchen. What might raise more eyebrows (or turn more stomachs) is the milk on the self service buffet being 13 degrees too warm, and part of the self-service buffet lacking safeguards against sneezing. Also, there was the “interior of microwave with rust that has pitted the surface. River Park wasn’t listed among the restaurants with little furry problems, although this was found: “Dead rodent on glue trap under mechanical dishwashing machine.” The Nov. 8 follow-up inspection found River Park needed another follow-up. If that has occurred, it isn’t in state online records yet.

READ MORE: Go to the Dining Adviser for reviews and inspection reports.

Inspectors saw live roaches scurrying about in these places, but not enough to send everybody home.

▪  Andreas Cafeteria & Coffee Shop, 16679 NE 19th Ave., North Miami Beach — A live roach under the three-compartment sink and six behind the reach-in cooler were spotted.

▪  Basil Thai, 7535 SW 88th St., South Miami-Dade — A couple of live ones were found, one by the back door and another by the three-compartment sink.

▪  Brawy Seafood, 401 Biscayne Blvd., Miami — The inspector saw “one live roach crawling on top of counter” near a food display area and the cashier, and a dead roach also in the front line area.

▪  Central Park Food Station, 2721 NW 79th Ave., West Miami-Dade — The inspector saw one live roach on a prep area, two live roaches and seven dead roaches in a wall cabinet by the front counter and under the food prep area. Despite these, several desserts getting a Stop Sale order, the place operating without a license, a total of nine High Priority violations and 26 overall violations, Central Park just got a warning.

▪  Construction Catering, 490 SE 10th Ct., Hialeah — A loner roach was spotted scurrying by the sink.

▪  Golden Corral, 33525 S. Dixie Hwy., Florida City — In addition to the “three live roaches observed inside of a non-working refrigerator drawer unit on the front cook line,” the inspector saw “three (dead roaches) underneath the non-working refrigerator drawers located underneath the grill and one inside a standup reach-in cooler in the kitchen.”

▪  Redland Golf & Country Club, 24451 SW 177th Ave. — This is another place that pulled the Rodent Report/Roach Report double, making the latter list after an inspector “observed 1 large live palmetto roach bug on the shelf in the dry storage room.” Also, there were five slices of cheese with a date of Oct. 20 in a walk-in cooler. The inspection was Nov. 2.

▪  Wendy’s, 1532 NE 163rd St., North Miami Beach — More bothersome than the “one roach on floor by hot holding unit in front counter area,” were the “approximately 17 flies above the Frosty machine, on the ceiling, and on the menu board.”

Now to the places where inspectors spotted only the dead roaches.

▪  Chef Aryeh, 1850 NE 164th St., North Miami Beach — Found under a bake cart by the prep table across from the three-compartment sink.

▪  El Novillo, 15450 New Barn Road, #110, Miami Lakes — In the kitchen area, two roach corpses were on top of the food prep area and four dead bodies were on the dry storage floor.

▪  Denny’s, 15235 SW 137th Ave, Southwest Miami-Dade — “Observed approximately five dead roaches at front server lines inside storage cabinets. Dead were removed.”

▪  Dunkin Donuts, 10754 SW 24th St., West Miami-Dade — No details given on the dead roaches. Maybe next of kin hadn’t been informed yet.

▪  Ming Yuon Restaurant, 3006 NW Second Ave., Miami — Three dead roaches. No location given.

▪  Oasis Grill, 12400 SW 152nd St., West Kendall — The rodent droppings that got them on this month's Rodent Report didn’t get them shut down, nor did the “approximately 40 dead roaches inside the oven in the kitchen.” Wonder if they got into any of the pork, chicken, beef, beans and rice that got Stop Sale orders.

▪  Okinawa Sushi Express, 119 SE Second Ave., Miami — Two dead ones on top of the dishwashing machine.

▪  Palantino Jamaichan Restaurant, 3004 NW Second Ave., Miami — Three dead roaches by the back exit door. No notation made as to whether they were coming or going.

▪  3 Chefs Chinese Restaurant, 275 NE 18th St., Miami — 10 dead ones under the three-compartment sink and in the mop sink area.

David J. Neal: 305-376-3559, @DavidJNeal