health

Mice - dead and alive - close popular Philly eateries

Mari A. Schaefer, Staff Writer

Updated: Thursday, March 1, 2018, 9:47 AM

Clean Plates

Problems with hot water and mice – dead and alive – continue to plague Philly restaurants, markets, and stores. In the the latest round up of Clean Plates, we found a familiar name – Oscar’s Tavern on Sansom St.

Location of Pizza Shack, 1500 Porter St. Google
Location of Misniks Deli, 2530 E. Allegheny. Google
Location of Master Grocery, 4998 Master St. Google
Location of New York Express Storage, 920 N 8th St. Google
Photo Gallery: Mice - dead and alive - close popular Philly eateries

Between Feb. 15 and Feb. 28, inspectors temporarily closed 15 facilities.

The inspectors visit nearly 1,000 eateries and food retailers every two weeks. Each inspection is generally regarded as a snapshot in time, and not necessarily a reflection of day-to-day conditions. Most violations were corrected immediately in the presence of an inspector.

To look up reports on a specific Philadelphia restaurant, or a Montgomery, Bucks, or Gloucester County eatery, visit philly.com/cleanplates.

A list of eateries that were closed, or are facing court dates, follows:

Location of Pizza Shack, 1500 Porter St.

Pizza Shack
1500 Porter St.
17 violations, 8 serious
There was no hot water in the hand sink in the prep area; there were uncovered foods in walk-in cooler; opened commercially processed ready-to-eat food, located in the refrigeration units, and held more than 48 hours, were not marked; there was no soap in the basement restroom or the prep area hand sink; the hand wash sink in the prep area was blocked by food trays and not accessible at all times for employee use; the ceiling, floors, and walls in the food prep area were in bad repair with holes in the floor and walls; there was no soap in restroom; the rear door did not have any screen protection.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 27.

Philly Soft Pretzel Factory
2125 W Oregon Ave.
4 violations, 2 serious
The food facility operator shall be the person-in-charge or shall designate a person-in-charge and shall ensure they are present during all hours of operation; there were unapproved deep freezers and other unapproved equipment in the facility; there were no sanitizer test strips to monitor the sanitizer concentration.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 27.

Zapata Deli Inc.
5141 Germantown Ave.
12 violations, 2 serious
There was a defective basket in wash basin, the facility was unable to properly wash, rinse, and sanitize dishes and utensils; plastic crates were used for elevation of food; onions and potatoes inside a milk crate were not stored at least six inches above the floor; there was unapproved equipment including a microwave found in the basement and ware washing areas; there was dirt and debris found along the floor perimeters in the food prep, retail, and ware washing areas; there was heavy ice accumulation observed inside the chest freezers.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 27.

Khan,Majeed/Majeeds Gyro King/#V-03098
3300 Market St.
7 violations, 5 serious
Cutting boards were stored on the floor; the cutting boards had deep scratches and scoring that did not allow for effective cleaning and sanitizing; fish and vegetables in the cold hold bin were not held at required temperatures; rice cookers were being stored outside of the cart without overhead protection; the cart surfaces needed general cleaning; a food safety person was not present; there was a discrepancy involving which commissary services this cart, 1332 N 9th Street #1 has not passed inspection within last 14 months and 920 N 8th Street Unit B did not have a license.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 26.

Location of Misniks Deli, 2530 E. Allegheny.

Misnik’s Deli
2530 E. Allegheny
8 violations, 3 serious
There was no hot water; potentially hazardous ready-to-eat foods, prepared in the food facility and held for more than 48 hours, located in the deli area, were not date marked; broken ceiling tiles were found in the bathroom area; floor cleaning and repairs needed in the front area; there were no sanitizer test strips; a food safety certified person was not present.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 26.

El Mayimbe Mini Market
4598 G. St.
17 violations, 4 serious
The water ice scoop was stored in stagnant water; food was not held at required temperatures; there was potentially hazardous ready-to-eat food, prepared/opened in the food facility and held for more than 48 hours that was not date marked; thermometers were not found in all refrigeration units; there was debris and trash bags surrounding the dumpster; used cooking oil containers were stored in front of an oil barrel in the dumpster area; the three bay sink drain had a severe leak; an approved backflow prevention device was not installed near the basement water meter; a cutting board was found with discoloration and deep scratches/scoring that did not allow for effective cleaning and sanitization.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 25.

Zion’s Cuisine
35 E Chelten AVe.
16 violations, 4 serious
Chicken, rice, and shrimp that were prepared in the food facility and held for more than 48 hours, located in the walk-in cooler, were not date marked; rice was not held at the required temperatures; fryers were not stored under the exhaust hood; the bare wood shelves in the rear storage area were not painted or sealed; there was no sign or poster posted at the hand wash sinks in the prep areas and restrooms area to remind food employees to wash their hands; the facility did not have any “No Smoking” signs posted; repackaged cake was not labeled properly with the name of product, ingredient statement, net weight, distributed by statement and/or nutritional facts; a defective sink faucet was found in the staff restroom; staff was unable to properly wash their hands.
Alteration or construction began prior to plan submission and approval. Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 23.

Las Tres Rancheritas Restaurant
3956 N. 5th St.
8 violations, 1 serious
Rat droppings were found along the floor perimeters in the basement area; a broken pipe caused raw sewage to back up into the basement; grease accumulation was found on the exterior surfaces of the cooking equipment; the facility was unable to properly wash, rinse, and sanitize equipment and utensils due to water pouring from the spout at the three-basin sink; a hole was found in the floor near the kitchen entrance.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 23.

Location of Master Grocery, 4998 Master St.

Master Grocery
4998 Master St.
14 violations, 6 serious
There was a cat in basement of facility where the beverages were stored; food including tomatoes were not stored at proper temperatures; the food safety certified person’s certification expired in July 2017; the ammonia concentration in the sanitizing solution of the three-bay ware wash sink was not mixed according to manufacture’s directions; an employee did not follow proper hand washing procedure; soap and/or warm water were not used and they did not dry their hands prior to donning new set of gloves; employees were not wearing hair restraints, such as nets, hats, or beard restraints; there were perforated ceiling tiles in the prep/ware washing area.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Feb. 22.

Spot Gourmet Burgers
2821 W Girard Ave.
19 violations, 6 serious
Access to the basement was not granted for the inspection; there was no hot water in the hand wash sinks; a food employee touched ready-to-eat food with his bare hands; mouse droppings were found along floor perimeters of the front and rear prep areas, the rear storage area, rear prep area wall ledges, and in the utility closet in the restroom; the bottom of the front reach-down refrigerator was filled with heavily soiled water; unlabeled chemical spray bottles were found; a chemical spray bottle was stored on the same shelf with spices; wrapped cookies, available for self-service at the front counter, were not properly labeled with the name of product, ingredient statement, net weight, and distributed by statement; grindable food waste observed in prep area trash can; the exhaust hood was replaced without the submission of plans. The plans have since been submitted, but the plan review process is not yet complete.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 20.

Oscar’s Tavern
1524 Sansom St.
18 violations, 6 serious
A live mouse was found in front prep area; mouse droppings were on the food contact surface of a heating lamp, on the prep table near the meat slicer, on shelving above the meat slicer, under the counter sink in front prep area, and on flooring in rear ware wash area; small black flies were seen harboring around the floor drain and catch basin in basement; cigarette butts were found on the floor in front food prep and basement areas; black residue and pink slime were found on the interior of the ice machine; the kitchen and bar area floors were in need of cleaning; there was static dust and grease accumulation on mechanical hood system in front prep area, the walls under bar counter in need of cleaning; the front door was open and did not protect against the entry of insects, rodents, and other animals.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 20.

Aya’s Cafe
2129 Arch St.
15 violations, 4 serious
There was gnawed sugar and hot chocolate in basement; mouse droppings were found along floor perimeters in the kitchen and basement, on shelves with pots and on top of the dish machine; rice and beans and sauces that were prepared in the food facility and held for more than 48 hours, were not date marked; the can opener had an accumulation of food residue on the food contact surfaces and there was black residue on the interior of the ice machine bin; the facility had an expired city certificate; hood filters had an accumulation of static dust and grease; the floor of the walk-in cooler had food debris and needed to be cleaned.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 20.

Location of New York Express Storage, 920 N 8th St.

New York Express Storage
920 N 8th St.
43 violations, 12 serious
The certified person was seen putting on single use gloves without a prior hand wash; both gates into the commissary were kept open which allow birds to fly into the building; mouse droppings were found on a bucket of cooking oil; frozen condensation was found on a case of fish in the walk-in freezer; water was dripping from ceiling on to a food preparation table; food employees were not wearing or wearing ineffective hair restraints, such as nets, hats, or beard restraints; chemicals were stored with food; light bulbs in two refrigeration units, above food preparation area and in the walk-in freezer were burned out; the 75-gallon hot water tank was not sufficient to meet the peak hot water demands throughout the food facility; a non food-grade hose was used to fill water tanks; there was trash on the ground in dumpster area.
Alteration or construction began prior to plan submission and approval. A Plan Review Application with proper plans, drawn to scale, showing all design features, including all food service equipment specifications and the location of toilet rooms, plumbing fixtures, storage areas, and utilities, must be submitted to the Office of Food Protection.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 16.

Roma’s Pizza
6129 Ridge Ave.
10 violations, 2 serious
A dead mouse and open poison were found on the basement floor perimeters; mouse droppings were found behind beverage refrigerators, in the rear hall under plastic crates, on the lower kitchen shelves, in the toilet room, the service, ware wash, cooking, and basement storage areas; the slicer had an accumulation of dried food residue on the food contact surfaces and was not being washed, rinsed and sanitized at least every four hours; open insecticides or rodenticides were not labeled by the manufacturer for food facility usage, and were found in the basement area near the soda syrup boxes; there was built up oil, mouse droppings and debris found on grease trap surfaces, on surfaces below the grease trap and other nearby surfaces; there were damaged walls in the basement storage area.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 16.

Pemberton Grocery
615 S 56th St.
13 violations, 3 serious
There were dishes and utensils in the hand wash sink; the toilet was clogged; expired milk was found; a leaky pipe was found under the hand washing sink in the food preparation area; there was debris found on the walls and along floor perimeters in the food preparation area and on floors in the basement area.; dead insects were on the floor in the basement area; water from a toilet pipe was found on floors in the basement area; there was a domestic ventilation hood used for the flat top grill and double basket deep fryer; there was debris on shelves in the food preparation area, the table where deep fryer and the grill were stored, and the gaskets of the deli case; cutting boards had deep scratches and scoring that did not allow for effective cleaning and sanitizing.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Feb. 14.

Eateries scheduled for hearing in the Court of Common Pleas on March 1.
Liberia Waterside Market; 6900 ELMWOOD AVE.; The Black Taxi, 745 N 25TH ST.

Eateries scheduled for hearing in the Court of Common Pleas on March 15.
Pho 20, 234 N 10TH ST.

Mari A. Schaefer, Staff Writer

Read full story: Mice - dead and alive - close popular Philly eateries

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