May 26, 2016

39 restaurants fail inspections over 10 month period; 11 establishments closed for violations

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B. Won restaurant in Champaign on  Feb. 24, 2016. Public health inspectors failed more than 40 restaurants over the past 10 months, including B. Won.

photo by Darrell Hoemann/CU-CitizenAccess.org

B. Won restaurant in Champaign on Feb. 24, 2016. Public health inspectors failed more than 40 restaurants over the past 10 months, including B. Won.

Ants on the wall, a live cockroach next to a meat grinder, fruit flies “too numerous to count” and a bucket of bloody juice were some of the worst violations over a ten-month period in Champaign County restaurants.

In total, 39 restaurants failed health inspections – several more than once – from June 2015 to April 2016, according to a review of inspection records. An additional 7 restaurants failed and were temporarily closed.

Four others were closed because of non-payment of annual fees or missing paperwork

If health inspectors from the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District give a restaurant a score below 36, it fails. If a restaurant receives a score below zero or poses an immediate heath threat to the public, the eatery is forced to close until corrections are made.

A restaurant can also be closed if it does not pay its annual permit fee. Two of the 11 restaurants were closed due to non-payment of the 2016 fee, but all eventually paid and were allowed to reopen. Two failed to have proper paperwork for staff.

If a restaurant fails an inspection with a score between 0 and 35 and there is no immediate health threat, it can stay open but will have to be re-inspected within 30 days. If such a restaurant would like to request a re-inspection sooner, it can do so by paying $25 for every hour of inspection.

In 2013, the health district board passed an ordinance requiring restaurants in Champaign and Urbana to post colored placards indicating if they passed their inspections. Green indicates passing, yellow indicates failure and a need for re-inspection and red indicates the restaurant is closed.

Restaurants outside of Champaign-Urbana are not required to post placards, but they can voluntarily do so if they choose.

The Champaign County Board of Health twice rejected moves to require restaurants outside the two cities to post placards because  some officials said they were unnecessary and may give customers a “false sense of security.”

If a restaurant is shutdown, it must pay $50 for its health permit to be reinstated, according to health district officials.

Mi Pueblo Mexican Store, 122 N. Garrard St., Rantoul, was closed twice in the past 10 months. It received a score of negative 6 on its June 2 2015 inspection, with eight critical violations including a live cockroach on a table with the meat grinder and slicer.

Its red closure notice was taken down and its permit was reinstated on June 4 2015 after it received an adjusted score of 75 on its re-inspection.

Then on Dec. 14, the health department closed the store again due to non-payment of the 2016 permit fee. The store paid the fee and was back in good standing.

It has since closed. El Mercadito Mexican Store opened in its place.

Since June 1, 2015, several other restaurants failed more than once, including Atlanta Bread Company on 1905 S. Neil Street in Champaign.

It failed its June 29 2015 health inspection with an adjusted score of 21 out of 100 and seven critical violations, including food stored at unsafe temperatures.

It received an adjusted score of 70 out of 100 on its July 7 2015 re-inspection.

On Feb. 21, it failed again with an adjusted score of 35 and six critical violations, including potential cross contamination due to poor hand washing practices, including an employee who was drinking a soda, handling food and giving change to customers without washing his or her hands.

A manager at the Atlanta Bread Company, who asked not to be identified, said inspectors “can be really nitpicky at times.”

B Won, 2006 S. Neil St., Champaign, also failed twice. On Sept. 2 a health inspector witnessed an employee pour a bucket of bloody juice into a sink and another employee rinse a pot of leafy greens in the same sink a minute later.

The restaurant failed its Sept. 2 inspection with an adjusted score of 4 out of 100 and seven critical violations.

B Won received an adjusted score of 40 out of 100, just five points away from failing, on its Sept. 30 re-inspection.

In total, the restaurant has failed 5 out of 18 inspections since 2008 and had a median score of 54 out of 100.

It failed again March 1 with an adjusted score of 19 out of 100 and five critical violations including potentially hazardous food storage of fish, shrimp and tofu out of safe temperature ranges. The restaurant passed its re-inspection March 31 with an adjusted score of 53.

Papa D’s, 401 E. Green St., Champaign, failed an inspection on March 23 with a score of 32 and four critical violations. An inspector found that the kitchen floors, pizza prep table shelf, walk-in cooler shelves, the exterior of the fryer, the mop sink bucket and the grease tap were all soiled.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on April 20 with an adjusted score of 62.

Papa D’s has failed 10 of 26 inspections since 2008, according to county records. Beginning in November 2009, the restaurant began a pattern of failing its first inspection, then passing the re-inspection and then failing again. It broke the pattern in March 2012 and passed its next four inspections but has since failed three more times.

An inspector shut down Caffe Bene, 700 S. Gregory St., Urbana, on Feb. 22 after it received an adjusted score of negative 8 with 10 critical violations. The inspection report noted that “little to no hand washing by employees was observed during the inspection.”

Such practices could lead to cross contamination of the different bacteria on the food.

A review of inspections indicate some practices, such as not washing hands between handling different types of food, are considered critical violations.

Matt Stasiewicz, assistant professor of applied food safety in the department of Food Sciences and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois, said there is little a consumer can do to tell if their food is contaminated with a pathogen that could cause illness, which is why health inspectors focus so heavily on overall practices of handling food.

“A key here is we don’t know at any given point that a restaurant is having cross­ contamination with a virus or a bacteria,” he said.

Inspections are required to ensure that restaurants are using good food handling practices and that mangers understand food safety concerns so they can build a strong culture of employees with the best intentions to keep food safe, Stasiewicz said.

“The viruses and bacteria in various food that make you sick come from a variety of sources and can be transmitted to food handlers in restaurants and customers,” Stasiewicz said. “The keys are to have strong practices to ensure that employees wash hands well to prevent transfer and make sure foods come in clean.”

Other critical violations included ants on the wall at El Toro of Mahomet in September.  There were also fruit flies at KFC on Springfield Ave in October and at Billy Barooz on Village Green Place in November.

 

Restaurants that were temporarily closed include:  

Bab Plus Korean Restaurant, 700 S. Gregory St. Suite C, Urbana

The health district shut the restaurant down on Sept. 29 after it found unapproved equipment and menu items at the restaurant.

Its red closure notice was taken down and its permit was reinstated on Oct. 5.

Caffe Bene, 700 S. Gregory St., Urbana

An inspector shut down the restaurant on Feb. 22 after receiving an adjusted score of negative 8 on the inspection.

It reopened after it was re-inspected on Feb. 25 and received a score of 100.

Firehouse Pizza Station 6, 1103 W. Windsor Road, Champaign

An inspector shut down the restaurant on Sept. 17 after the inspector found the hot water was not working.

The restaurant is no longer open.

Kaam’s Choice Steak & Seafood Truck, 1106 Olen Driven, Mahomet

On Dec. 14, the health department closed the restaurant due to non-payment of the 2016 permit fee.

The restaurant paid the fee and was placed back in good standing.

Longbranch, 310 S. Main St., Gifford

The restaurant was inspected on Aug. 7 with an adjusted score of 12 out of 100 and six critical violations. The inspector noted there were several flies in the kitchen and shut the restaurant down because of uncontrolled risk factors.

The restaurant owner closed the business on Aug. 14, and it reopened under new ownership on Sept. 15, according to Jim Roberts, director of environmental health for the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District.

The restaurant, now called Longbranch Steakhouse, passed an inspection on Nov. 10 with a score of 96.

Mi Pueblo Mexican Store, 122 N. Garrard St., Rantoul

The store initially failed its health inspection on June 2, 2015 with an adjusted score of negative 6 out of 100 with eight critical violations, including a live cockroach on the table with the meat grinder and slicer.

Its permit was reinstated on June 4 2015 after it received an adjusted score of 75 on its re-inspection.

On Dec. 14, the health department closed the store due to non-payment of the 2016 permit fee.

The store paid the fee and was back in good standing.

It has since closed.

Another store, El Mercadito Mexican Store has opened there.

Mia Za’s, 629 E. Green St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on March 14 and failed with an adjusted score of 10 out of 100 and eight critical violations including potentially hazardous food stored at unsafe temperatures.

The restaurant was re-inspected on March 24 but was halted and the health permit was suspended due to a repeat risk factor violation,

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on March 28 with an adjusted score of 93, and the permit was reinstated.

Minneci’s at the Crossing, 2501 Village Green Place, Champaign

The health district shut down Minecci’s at the Crossing on Sept. 16 after the restaurant owner did not submit proof that supervisory staff were Food Service Sanitation certified after its June 10 inspection.

The health district reinstated the restaurant’s permit on Sept. 17 after it provided proof of certification.

Rantoul Public House, 108 N. Garrard St., Rantoul

On Dec. 14, the health department closed the restaurant due to non-payment of the 2016 permit fee.

The restaurant paid the fee and was put back back in good standing.

Tacos Del Sur, 405 S. Maplewood Drive, Rantoul

On Dec. 14, the health department closed the restaurant due to non-payment of the 2016 permit fee.

The restaurant paid the fee and returned to good standing.

Tolono Diner, 107 N. Watson Ave., Tolono

On March 25, the restaurant could not provide Food Service Sanitation Manager Certification, so the permit was suspended and the restaurant was closed.

After proof of completion of the certification, the restaurant was allowed to reopen.

Failures include:

Antonio’s Pizza, 619 E. Green St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Aug. 18 with an adjusted score of 6 out of 100 and eight critical violations including employee medication and cold medicine stored in the food prep area.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Aug. 21 with an adjusted score of 72.

Atlanta Bread Company, 1905 S. Neil St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on June 29, 2015 and received an adjusted score of 21 out of 100 and seven critical violations including eggs at potentially hazard temperatures.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on July 7 with an adjusted score of 70.

It failed again February 21 when it received an adjusted score of 35 out of 100 and six critical violations including, again, potentially hazardous food temperatures for eggs.

The restaurant passed is re-inspection on March 7 with an adjusted score of 79.

B Won, 2006 S. Neil St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Sept. 2 with an adjusted score of 4 out of 100 and seven critical violations including a molded to-go container of rice and beans in the side dish make table reach in cooler.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Sept. 30 with an adjusted score of 40.

It failed again March 1 with an adjusted score of 19 out of 100 and five critical violations including potentially hazardous food storage of fish, shrimp and tofu.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection March 31 with an adjusted score of 53.  

Bangkok Thai & Pho 911, 410 E. Green St. Unit 3, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on March 9 with an adjusted score of 16 out of 100 and six critical violations including four violations of potentially hazardous food temperatures.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on March 30 with an adjusted score of 85.

Billy Barooz, 2521 Village Green Place, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Nov. 3 with an adjusted score of 19 out of 100 and five critical violations including house flies and fruit flies too numerous to count present in areas throughout the kitchen, dish room and downstairs storage rooms.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 23 with an adjusted score of 91.

Burrito King, 408 E. Green St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on July 22 2015 with an adjusted score of 25 out of 100 and five critical violations including sanitizing solution with improper chemical concentrations.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on July 29 2015 with an adjusted score of 85.

Cactus Grill, 1405 S. Neil St., Champaign

The store was inspected on Aug. 10 with an adjusted score of 29 out of 100 and four critical violations including food stored at unsafe temperatures.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Sept. 15 with an adjusted score of 76.

Casey’s General Store, 501 N. Long St., Tolono

The store was inspected on June 5 with an adjusted score of 12 out of 100 and seven critical violations including a hand sink blocked by equipment.

The store passed its re-inspection on June 30 with an adjusted score of 64.

Champaign Country Club, 1211 S. Prospect St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Dec. 9 and failed with an adjusted score of 1 and seven critical violations, including an employee handling raw seafood, removing cloves and applying new gloves without washing her hands leading to potential cross contamination.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Dec. 16 with an adjusted score of 72.

(The club was shut down on May 11 after failing its inspection with a negative 6 and 11 critical violations. It was allowed to reopen on May 13 after passing its re-inspection with a 98. See related story)

China Garden, 114 N. Vine St., Urbana

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 5 and received an adjusted score of 25 out of 100 with six critical violations including the storage of a bottle of Raid, considered “poisonous or toxic material.”

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Oct. 15 with an adjusted score of 91.

Chinatown Buffet, 713 Marketview Drive, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on March 14 and failed with an adjusted score of 25 out of 100 and six critical violations, including an employee smoking on the job.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on April 12 with an adjusted score of 77.

Dublin O’Neil’s/301 Mongolia, 301 N. Neil St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 27 and failed with an adjusted score of 20 and four critical violations, including the possession of an unlabeled container of pink powder found among chemicals.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 23 with an adjusted score of 72.

(It also failed on May 2 with an adjusted score of 28 and five critical violations. It is not clear if the restaurant had been re-inspected as of May 24.)

El Charro Mexican Grocery, 55 E. Green St., Champaign

The store was inspected on March 15 and failed with an adjusted score of 16 out of 100 and five critical violations, including potentially hazardous food stored at unsafe temperatures.

The store passed its re-inspection on April 5 with an adjusted score of 55.

El Toro of Mahomet, 703 Eastwood Drive, Mahomet

The restaurant was inspected on Sept. 30 with an adjusted score of 16 out of 100 and eight critical violations including numerous ants on the wall.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Oct. 27 with an adjusted score of 77.

Guido’s Bar & Grill, 2 E. Main St, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 2 and received an adjusted score of 11 out of 100 with eight critical violations including a “pool of standing fluid” on the landing base of the stairs coming from a hand sink deemed “inaccessible for use.”

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 2 with an adjusted score of 43.

KFC, 2201 W. Springfield Ave, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 15 and failed with a score of 27 and four critical violations, including “houseflies too numerous to count … present in areas throughout the kitchen. Drain flies were present in the men’s restroom and were congregated around a damaged/soiled portion of the coved base tile.”

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 13 with an adjusted score of 67.

(It failed again on April 20 with an adjusted score of 27 and four critical violations. It passed its re-inspection on May 19 with an adjusted score of 73.)

Lai Lai Wok, 402 E. Green St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 27 and failed with an adjusted score of 32 out of 100 and three critical violations, including open employee drinks on top of the steam table.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 2 with an adjusted score of 69.

Linden Banquet Center, 224 W. Wheat Avenue, Rantoul

The restaurant was inspected on June 18 with an adjusted score of 5 out 100 and seven critical violations, including a “heavily molded” ice machine.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on July 13 with an adjusted score of 79.

Longhorn Steakhouse, 2101 N. Prospect Avenue, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on March 9 and failed with an adjusted score of 7 out of 100 and seven critical violations including cross-contamination of raw meat and cooked meat.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on March 16 with an adjusted score of 89.

Monical’s Pizza, 703 N. Third St., St. Joseph

The restaurant was inspected on Aug. 24 with an adjusted score of 14 out of 100 and seven critical violations including a bag of “spoiled/molded” chicken stored in the cooler.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Sept. 21 with an adjusted score of 96.

My Thai, 2312 W. Springfield Ave., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Nov. 9 and failed with an adjusted score of 19 and six critical violations.

The restaurant was re-inspected on Nov. 24 and received an adjusted score of 96.

Neil St. Food & Liquor, 701 N. Neil St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on March 21 and failed with an adjusted score of 16 out of 100 and seven critical violations including an employee beginning to prepare food without first washing hands.

The restaurant scored a 98 on its re-inspection on April 19.

Niro’s Gyros, 2001 W. Springfield Ave., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Jan. 25 and failed with a score of 28 and four critical violations including several potentially hazardous foods, such as hot dogs, sausage and cooked chicken that was not cooled properly.

It was re-inspected on Feb. 25 and failed with a score of 31 and three critical violations. Its health permit was suspended because it failed its re-inspection.

The restaurant passed its second re-inspection on March 2 with an adjusted score of 85 and was allowed to re-open.

Panera Bread No. 1297, 1903 Convenience Place, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Sept. 14 and failed with an adjusted score of 29 out of 100 and five critical violations, including a hand sink located in the drive-thru area was blocked by a garbage can and chemical tubs.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Oct. 5 with an adjusted score of 74.

Papa D’s, 401 E. Green St., Champaign,

The restaurant failed its inspection on March 23 with a score of 32 and four critical violations, including soiled kitchen floors, pizza prep table shelf, walk-in cooler shelves, the exterior of the fryer, the mop sink bucket and the grease tap.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on April 20 with an adjusted score of 62.

Peace Meal at Ludlow U.M.C, 314 W. Thomas St., Ludlow 

The restaurant was inspected on July 28 with an adjusted score of 14 out of 100 and 11 critical violations, including home-prepared meals stored in the kitchen. Meals were not licensed to be prepared outside the kitchen.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Aug. 31 with an adjusted score of 100.

Philo Tavern, 101 1/2 Washington St., Philo

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 20 and failed with an adjusted score of 15 out of 100 and four critical violations including improperly keeping tomatoes cold by storing them on ice. 

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 19 with an adjusted score of 72.

Pizzeria Antica, 10 E. Chester St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Dec. 9 and failed with an adjusted score of 27 and nine critical violations, including window cleaner hanging above food products.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Dec. 11 with an adjusted score of 97.

Rainbow Garden, 1402 S. Neil St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Sept. 23 with an adjusted score of 34 out of 100 and five critical violations. The inspector noted an employee washing his hands without soap.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Oct. 20 with an adjusted score of 91.

Rich’s Family Restaurant, 305 W. Ellen St., Ogden

The restaurant was inspected on June 11 and received an adjusted score of 9 out of 100 with seven critical violations, including an ice machine “heavily soiled” with slime and mold that was dripping into the ice.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on July 7 with an adjusted score of 36, just one point away from failing.

Ryan’s Family Steakhouse No. 2287, 1004 W. Anthony Dr., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Dec. 11 and failed with a score of 6 and seven critical violations, including a bottle labeled bleach hanging above the meat preparation area.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Jan. 5 with an adjusted score of 85.

The business has since closed.

Sbarro at Illini Union, 1401 W. Green St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Dec. 14 and failed with a score of 33 and five critical violations, including a heavily molded onion found in the walk-in cooler with other onions.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Jan. 14 with an adjusted score of 94.

Subway, 2409 Village Green Place, Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 8 and received an adjusted score of 17 out of 100 with seven critical violations including an employee using a hand sink as a dump sink.

The restaurant passed re-inspection on Oct. 28 with an adjusted score of 100.

Subway, 333 S. Century, Rantoul

The restaurant was inspected on Jan. 26 and failed with a score of 4 and 10 critical violations, including grime build-up on the ice machine and a black liquid dripping directly into the ice bin.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on February 23 with an adjusted score of 89.

Subway, 104 N. Long St., Tolono

The restaurant failed an inspection on Sept. 10 and received an adjusted score of 30 out of 100 with five critical violations including the sink designated for hand washing filled with food debris.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Oct. 6 with an adjusted score of 43.

Tang Dynasty, 140 Lincoln Square Mall, Urbana

The restaurant failed an inspection on March 14 with an adjusted score of 24 and four critical violations including potentially hazardous food at unsafe temperatures.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on April 13 with an adjusted score of 54.

Tolono Diner, 107 N. Watson St., Tolono

The restaurant was inspected on Oct. 20 and received an adjusted score of 7 out of 100 with nine critical violations including roast beef, ham, hotdogs and milk that were not labeled with the date they were opened.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Nov. 16 with an adjusted score of 59.

Wendy’s, 2033 N. Prospect Ave., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on September 21 and received an adjusted score of 9 out of 100 with seven critical violations, including cross contamination issues after an inspector noted an employee touch a fry basket with gloves that were contaminated with raw meat. Later, another employee touched the contaminated basket handle with bare hands and picked parchment paper up off the floor without washing his hands before starting to cook again.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on Oct. 16 with an adjusted score of 67.

The business has since changed ownership.

Which Wich, 512 E. Green St., Champaign

The restaurant was inspected on March 17 and received an adjusted score of 34 and six critical violations including employees who did not wash their hands before prepping food or wash their hands between cleaning and food preparation.

The restaurant passed its re-inspection on April 12 with an adjusted score of 98.

Claire Everett, Corinne Ruff, Acton Gorton and Pam Dempsey contributed to this report.

  • Jawaburger

    It always makes me a little sad to see these lists. I worked at a Champaign restaurant for over 13 years and we were never shut down. It makes me wonder about the management at some of these places.

  • Paul

    Would you also publish the names of the inspectors along with the results?