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.
June 2018 was a dark month in restaurant health inspections. A whopping 20 eateries landed on the Maricopa County health inspector's dreaded D List. Things got dicey. Cooked noodles were handled with bare hands, all kinds of debris was left on kitchen tools, and we had a poke situation that you'll have to read to believe.
Phoenix Airport Marriott
1101 North 44th Street
"Observed cooked breaded chicken made on 5/20/18, onion dip made 5/24/18, marinara sauce made on 5/26/18, lemon cream made on 5/28/18, Bolognese sauce made 5/28/18 as well as salsa made on 5/27/18 inside the reach in cold holding units by grills. PIC discarded items (see embargo form). A food shall be discarded if: It exceeds the 7 days at 41F, does not bear a date/day and has been held for (more than) 24 hours."
Poki Bar Central
2836 East Indian School Road, Suite A-1
"Establishment serves raw salmon as ready to eat. Person in charge states that the salmon is purchased from a supermarket and then frozen in the establishment's freezers overnight before being thawed and served. Raw salmon served as ready to eat must be frozen in compliance with food code regulations. A copy of the food code guidance on serving raw fish as ready to eat was left with the establishment. The person in charge will not serve salmon until it is obtained from on approved source and has undergone the appropriate parasite destruction procedure."
4117 North 16th Street
"Observed kitchen staff preparing ready to eat noodles with bare hands. Salads prepared with noodles were discarded and employees washed hands and put on gloves. Discussed risk of food contamination from bare hand contact with ready to eat foods with person in charge."
6727 East McDowell Road, #110, Mesa
"Marking Observed fish for sushi in back prep cooler (at front half of restaurant) without date marks. Per PIC, the fish is from yesterday. PIC placed date marks on sushi at time of inspection. Ensure date marks are applied on all ready to eat foods that are not consumed within a day."
Streets of New York
16841 East Shea Boulevard, Building D, Fountain Hills 85268
"At prep area, slicer with accumulation of food debris on food and nonfood contact surfaces. Per employee, slicer was covered after use and presumed clean. Employee was instructed to properly re-wash, rinse, and sanitize slicer. Discussed cleaning of equipment before stored."
Courtyard by Marriott - Scottsdale @ Mayo Clinic
13444 East Shea Boulevard, Scottsdale
"Employee handled raw hamburger, removed gloves, then worked with food storage containers without washing hands. Employee touched clothing with bare hands, then worked with cooking utensils without washing hands."
Four Peaks Brewing Company
1340 East Eighth Street, #104, Tempe
"In walk-in cooler #1, two containers of cooked in-house artichoke dip made the previous day were covered with plastic wrap, covered with lid, and stacked on top of each other had an internal temperature of 46-50*F. The person in charge (PIC) verified the food temperature using own food probing thermometer. Food item failed to cool down to 41*F within 6 hours and was discarded by PIC at the time of inspection. "
8900 East Via Linda, Scottsdale
"Employee working with raw chicken, donned hat with gloved hands, then went back to task of working with raw chicken without changing gloves and washing hands. Instructed employee to remove gloves, wash hands, and don new gloves once contamination has occurred. Discussed with manager and employee that double glove is not allowed in food service, unless loose gloves are used that are easily removable without using two hands."
Fuego Bar and Grill
9118 West Van Buren Street, Tolleson
"Heavy accumulation of food debris on can opener and bean mixer. Clean items more frequently so that no food debris builds on equipment."
La Familia Carniceria
2801 East Van Buren Street
"Observed an onion dicer stored away as clean with white black organic matter in between the plates. Food handling employee placed item in the 3-comp sink to be washed, rinsed and sanitized. All equipment and food contact surfaces must be clean to the sight and touch."
Mambo's Dominican Kitchen
1950 North Arizona Avenue, #8, Chandler
"Observed spray bottle chemicals being stored on shelf with bottled ketchups behind bar. Chemicals were moved to bottom shelf at the time of inspection. Chemicals should be stored below or away from food, equipment, utensils and single-service items to prevent contamination."
1628 East Southern Avenue
"On mop sink, observed long hose with pressure hose nozzle at the end, and the water was turned on the faucet. PIC disconnected the hose upon request. Please do not use a pressure nozzle that causes continuous pressure on the AVB."
1747 East Camelback Road, #103
"Walls and handwashing sink knobs have excessive grease buildup. Discussed cleaning frequency with PIC, physical facilities must be cleaned routinely to sight and touch."
La Taqueria De Jalisco
3015 East Thomas Road, #4
"Observed a bottle of orthoboric acid roach and ant killer in the back of the establishment by the dry storage area. PIC discarded bottle. Please ensure pesticides are only applied by Certified Applicator."
New China Gate
7730 East McDowell Road, #111, Scottsdale
"Observed Ready to Eat food (RTE) items (pork) being stored in direct contact with to go shopping polythene bags. Informed the manager that deleterious materials can be transferred from non food grade materials to the food. The manager to obtain food grade materials to be used for storage of food items."
5 R Cha Thai Bistro
2011 North Recker Road, Mesa
"Observed RTE TCS sauces containing peanut butter, coconut milk, and curry paste in the walk-in without date marks. Per the PIC, sauces were made the night prior. If products are not consumed within 24 hours, they need to be date marked. PIC date marked the sauces at time of inspection. Ensure proper date marking procedures at all times."
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Bahia De Kino
1040 West Broadway Road, Mesa
"Observed raw ceviche shrimp being stored above heads of lettuce and peppers. Observed raw shrimp skewers and raw bacon wrapped vegetables being stored above vegetable mix and jalapeños. Employees re-arranged items. Raw animal foods should be stored below or away from ready-to-eat foods and based on their internal cooking temperature."
Tacos y Mariscos El Cochorit (mobile)
"Equipment, food-contact surfaces, nonfood-contact surfaces, and utensils plastic cube was filled with utensils that had significant build up of organic matter. Per operator, the utensils were clean. Operator set the utensils aside for proper cleaning. Utensils must be clean to sight and touch."
Sahuaros Cahuamanta (mobile)
"Bare Hand Contact with Ready to Eat Foods Cook touched ready to eat cut cabbage with bare hands. Touching ready to eat foods with your bare hands is prohibited. Use gloves, tongs, etc. Cut cabbage was discarded."
Kneaders Bakery and Cafe
2910 South Santan Village Parkway, Gilbert
"Observed personal drink without both a lid and a straw. All personal drinks need to have both a lid and a straw. Personal drinks shall also be placed in an area that will not contaminate any food or utensils."