October 2, 2014

Health inspections temporarily close three restaurants

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Ichiban Buffett, 105 N. Mattis, Champaign, Illinois on Tuesday, June 2, 2015.

Darrell Hoemann/C-U Citizen Access

Ichiban Buffett, 105 N. Mattis, Champaign, Illinois on Tuesday, June 2, 2015.

Claire Everett/CU-CitizenAccess.org — Raw sewage in the kitchen preparation area closed down the Aroma Curry House in Champaign in August for two days.

Health inspectors also shut down Mirabelle Fine Pastries in Urbana in August and closed Golden Harbor restaurant in September because of critical violations including improper temperatures for food.

The three restaurants were the only ones that failed their inspections in the past two months. However, five restaurants had close calls, passing inspections with a score of 36, just one point away from failing.

Food establishments are scored on a 100-point scale and fail with an adjusted score below 36. Points are deducted for critical and non-critical violations. Inspectors then deduct additional points based on the number of repeat violations and the number of critical violations to get an adjusted score.

Restaurants that fail below zero or have critical violations that pose threat to consumers are immediately shut down.

Under a new system that launched this year restaurants in Champaign-Urbana are required to post a color-coded placard based on health inspection results. A red placard means the restaurant was shut down.  A yellow placard means the restaurant failed its inspection but is allowed to remain open. A green placard means it passed its inspection.

The four establishments that received passing scores of only 36 and thus green placards in August were Cactus Grill at 1405 S. Neil St. in Champaign; Espresso Royale at 1117 W. Oregon St. in Urbana; China Express at 1235 E. Grove Avenue in Rantoul; and Super Taco at 519 W. Town Center Blvd. in Champaign. In September, Flat Top Grill, at 607 S. Sixth St. in Champaign received a score of 36.

Critical violations 

At the Aroma Curry House, which is at 2502 Village Green Place, inspectors tested a hand washing sink and a prep sink and found raw sewage discharging from the floor drain. The restaurant was immediately closed on Aug 26. It was also cited for critical violations including uncooked raw chicken and milk held at an unsafe temperature.

Inspectors also said found there was not a manager certified in food service sanitation at the restaurant. Illinois law requires at least one food service sanitation manager to be on site in a food establishment at all times.

On Aug. 28, the restaurant received an adjusted score of 60 during a reinspection and reopened.

Mirabelle Fine Pastries, at 124 W. Main St. in Urbana, was closed when it had repeat risk factor violations including improper temperature holding for foods during a reinspection conducted on Aug. 11.  When the inspector came back after the restaurant’s requested reinspection, there were repeat risk factor violations, so he shut the restaurant down instead of finishing the reinspection. It passed its second reinspection with an adjusted score of 86 the next day and was allowed to reopen.

Golden Harbor, at 505 S. Neil St. in Champaign, failed when it received an adjusted score of 26 with five critical violations including meat, vegetables and tofu held at unsafe temperatures. The inspector also noted an employee prepping vegetables in the 3-compartment sink while dishes were in one of the compartments. Only one process is supposed to happen in the sink at a time.

The restaurant had to post a yellow placard on its door. But it was later closed for violations and reopened on Sept. 11.