Restaurant News

12 Metro Phoenix Restaurants Scored a 'D' on County Health Inspections in March

Every week, the county's health inspectors within Maricopa County Environmental Services give restaurants grades after completing inspections. Participation in the rating system, however, is voluntary, which means owners or managers do not have to accept a grade after an inspection; instead, the restaurants are listed online as "not participating." And in some cases, grades posted online may change, which typically means a restaurant has provided necessary documentation for food safety or fixed a critical issue that led to a low grade. Here's a more detailed explanation.

Maybe Maricopa County health inspectors were being especially strict about it in March, but we've noticed a pattern in D-list offenders this month. That is, a gloveless pattern. It seems that restaurant employees across town are forgetting to don gloves, change their gloves, or wash their hands between glove-changes.

From spring training to pho, read through this list before heading out for lunch:

Fuddruckers, Tempe (7470 South Priest Drive)

"Open salsa container dated 2/11 open date, and to be discarded 3/11 in walk in cooler. Salsa discarded by PIC at time of inspection. Ensure salsa and other TCS foods are date marked to be used or discarded within 7 days, with the first day being the day the product was opened, cooked, or thawed."

Crowne Plaza Phoenix Airport, Phoenix (4300 East Washington Street)

"Employee was wiping down counters and without washing hands or changing gloves grabbed pizza out of the oven and touched part of the pizza with his glove. Employee removed gloves, and washed hands properly, and put on new gloves. Pizza was discarded by person in charge."

Chicago Cubs Spring Training Complex @ Mesa Riverview, Mesa (2330 West Rio Salado Parkway)

"Observed employee take hot dog off of rotating hot-holding machine and drop the hot dog on the counter. Discussed with PIC that ready to eat food items should not come into contact with non-food contact surfaces."

McDonald's, Phoenix (1601 East Glendale Avenue)

"Employee handled raw beef then went to handle clean equipment at make line without changing gloves and washing hands. Same employee handled raw chicken at fryer then went to handle clean equipment at make line and grill without changing gloves and washing hands. Employee was asked to wash hands when changing tasks."

Cactus Tavern, Phoenix (2017 East Cactus Road)

"Observed an employee handling raw chicken, removed gloves, and proceeded to don another pair of gloves without washing hands. Instructed the employee to wash hands for at least 20 seconds and then proceeded to don a clean pair of gloves. Always ensure that hands are washed after handling raw animal product and prior to handling Ready to Eat (RTE) food."

Restaurant La Yaquesita, Phoenix (3410 West Van Buren Street)

"Observed cooked green tomatoes in cooling process at 100F, cooling at room temperature. Employee placed cooked tomatoes into reach-in freezer. Proper methods are ice bath or shallow container in reach-in or walk-in. Must be used in order to reach proper cooling temperatures."

Mucha Lucha Taco Shop, Tempe (818 West Broadway Road)

"Employee removed gloves while cooking shrimp and placed new gloves on without washing. Discussed when to wash hands with employee and had them wash hands and put on a new set of gloves."

Einstein Bros. Bagels, Scottsdale (4912 East Shea Boulevard Suite 101)

"On prep line, employee picked up something off of ground then continued working with ready to eat foods without changing gloves. Instructed employee to change gloves, wash hands, and don new gloves to continue with handling of ready to eat food."

Wendy's, Phoenix (5225 West Indian School Road)

"Vanilla frosty mix-52-53F in frosty machine. PIC stated that mix had been in unit since about 8AM and discarded-see embargo form. Keep PHF/TCS foods in cold holding at 41F or below.... PIC stated that machine would not be used until repaired."

4 One 4 Pub & Pizza, Tempe (414 South Mill Avenue Unit 118)

"Observed floor drain at bar area, located under soda boxes, with heavy mold growth. Please have floor drain cleaned on a routine basis to prevent accumulation."

Pho Hoang Duc Vietnamese Cuisine, Phoenix (4808 North 35th Avenue)

"Observed several live and dead German cockroaches throughout establishment. Person in charge did not have pest control records available at time of inspection. Ensure pest control is performed by a certified pest control specialist and have receipts available for re-inspection."

Chick Fil-A, Mesa (6555 East Southern Avenue Suite 2012)

"Observed cashier handle a transaction at the register then place gloves on to handle a container of fries without washing their hands before placing the gloves on. Informed person in charge about proper handwashing intervals. Employee washed their hands at the time of the inspection. Educate employees on this practice."
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Lily Altavena