Restaurant News & Reviews

Restroom roaches and pizza rodents are why these restaurants were shut down

A statewide look at Florida’s top restaurant violations for 2016-17

Restaurant inspections ensure food retail establishments are in compliance with state sanitation and food safety procedures. Here are the top ten violations inspectors found between 2016-17 in Florida restaurant kitchens.
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Restaurant inspections ensure food retail establishments are in compliance with state sanitation and food safety procedures. Here are the top ten violations inspectors found between 2016-17 in Florida restaurant kitchens.

Inspections slowed during the holidays, so only six restaurants have made this edition of the shutdown list.

Included is one restaurant that set an unofficial record for most consecutive inspection failures.

What follows from Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation inspections. We don’t control who gets inspected or how strictly they get inspected. We report on these reports without passion or prejudice, but with a dollop of humor.

In alphabetical order:

All Star Vendor, 1126 S. Powerline Rd., Deerfield Beach — Yes, hot dog carts and food trucks get inspected. And they’ve got specific rules to follow.

Such as, “Any grill, stove or other heating element used to heat hot dogs must be an integral (built-in/attached) part of the unit.” Sausage was being reheated on a detached grill.

Also, did you know that “All food being served from hotdog cart other then hotdog must be prepackaged?” That’s why the Italian Ice coming out of a detached reach-in freezer was a no-no.

And hot dog cart owners can get Stop Sales dropped on them, such as when they can’t show that 16 ounces of cooked onions in red sauce came from an approved source.

Nami Japanese Restaurant, 8381 Pines Blvd., Pembroke Pines — Nami gets our Coyote Award, named after the repeatedly failing Road Runner chaser, for failing five consecutive inspections.

The litany of failure began Thursday. Online state records say when the inspector gave Nami a shot at getting back open with the rare Sunday re-inspection, Nami failed not once, but twice.

So what was the big problem? They had some bugs.

“Eight live roaches at sushi bar under display coolers in glue trap” and “50 dead roaches under cooking equipment at cook line ... 35 dead roaches found under three-compartment sink and under dish machine area ... 25 dead roaches under shelves in dry storage area No. 1 ... 10 dead roaches at dry storage room No. 2 next to office ... one dead roach on top shelf at server station .... two dead in glue trap under hibachi station ... one dead roach on top ice machine in kitchen area.”

There were some cleanliness issues, also. “Ceiling/ceiling tiles/vents soiled with accumulated food debris, grease, dust, or mold-like substances and water stains in dry storage room and server station.”

When the inspector came back Friday, no dead roaches were spotted, but “One live under position No. 2 at sushi bar ... three live roaches on shelf in dry storage No. 1 where food is stored (rice containers and packaged/canned foods) ... three live under the three-compartment sink in kitchen area ... one live roach inside gasket of walk in vegetable cooler door.”

Saturday and Sunday, the manager killed the live roaches spotted by the inspector.

Nami finally passed a re-inspection Monday.

Paraiso Cafe, 2156 NW Seventh Ave., Miami — Imagine going to the restroom middle of your meal and finding...

“Five live roaches in men’s bathroom inside the hand sink, and three by the wall ... approximately five roaches behind the women bathroom door and four inside the hand washing sink in the women’s bathroom.”

But at least you wouldn’t see the two live roaches behind the cook line storage shelf.

Also, the manager got cited for not being able to recognize signs of foodborne sickness or other sicknesses that should keep someone from working with food or utensils.

“Wall soiled with accumulated grease, food debris, and/or dust. Throughout the kitchen area.”

“Unnecessary items stored in garbage enclosure. Glass cooler, pool table,slicer.”

This was the scene Dec. 26, the day after Christmas. Paraiso got it back together Dec. 27.

Portobolla, 9770 S. Military Tr., Boynton Beach — Bags of seafood and chicken sat right on the floor. Having any boxes or bags of food sitting right on the floor is a Basic violation. Seems like the inspector should be able to bump it up to Intermediate when the following High Priority violation is present.

“Five fresh rodent droppings underneath shelf, two fresh and five dry rodent droppings in water underneath three-compartment sink. Two rodent droppings in water on top of the detergent chemical container, one fresh rodent dropping on top of the rinse additive, three fresh rodent droppings and five dry rodent droppings underneath the Dishmachine at dishmachine area. The dishmachine area and the kitchen are in the same room.

“Two dry rodent droppings shelf underneath the prep table, two dry rodent droppings by the pizza dough machine at the kitchen. Four fresh rodent droppings and six dry rodent droppings on the shelf under the ice bin at pizza station at front line. Three dry rodent droppings underneath shelving at dry storage area.”

Portobella was closed Dec. 28 and reopened Dec. 29.

Saleya, 22 NE Third Ave., Miami — The only High Priority violation on Thursday was 20 roaches crawling inside a kitchen area cardboard box like a litter of puppies.

Otherwise, the kitchen handwashing sink had standing (or slowly draining) water but no way to dry hands at the kitchen handwashing sink. And it seems as if they could use a restaurant-wide Sponges-and-Fabuloso party.

“Interior of reach-in cooler soiled with accumulation of food residue....In kitchen range, observed accumulation of old food debris and grease located in hot line kitchen area...accumulation of food debris inside the three-compartment sink in kitchen area.”

And this: “In-use tongs stored on equipment door handle between uses.”

Saleya reopened Friday.

The Spot, 1301 Belvedere Rd., West Palm Beach — The local flies found The Spot a perfect spot to hang out on Friday:

“Ten on cantaloupes in box stored on prep table in back room ... two flying around at bar in dining room ... one flying around near reach-in cooler near cook line ... one flying around near hand sink on cook line.”

The melons might not be as problematic as the milk, one of the many foods smacked with a Stop Sale. With a broken reach-in cooler, none of these foods got cooled to 41 degrees Fahrenheit: whole milk, non-fat milk, 2% milk, sour cream, cheese cake, honeydew, cottage cheese, peeled hard-boiled eggs and butter packets.

Only one live roach, but nine dead ones on a glue board atop the dishwasher and 12 more corpses on glue boards under the dishwasher, three-compartment sink and hand sink on the cook line.

Two more re-inspections out-and-out fails followed, later Friday and early Saturday. You could hit The Spot after the second Saturday re-inspection.

Since 1989, David J. Neal’s domain at the Miami Herald has expanded to include writing about Panthers (NHL and FIU), Dolphins, old school animation, food safety, fraud, naughty lawyers, bad doctors and all manner of breaking news. He drinks coladas whole. He does not work Indianapolis 500 Race Day.


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