Health Department Roundup

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For your holiday pleasure: An artist's rendition of Houston Press blog editor Rich Connelly, in ornament form
In the spirit of the season, we're going to throw in more clean inspections than usual. In hard news, if it bleeds, it leads; and for the Health Department Roundup, if there's slime, it gets covered in a way we wish would rhyme. But sometimes you just want to tell restaurateurs and Subway managers, good job staying out of trouble or bribing inspectors. Just kidding about the bribes. Merry Christmas.

Branch Water Tavern (510 Shepherd) got hit with just two violations - no thermometer to measure air in the warmest part of the facility where potentially hazardous food is stored, and kitchenware/equipment was not properly washed off before interruptions in service. Hey guys.

The Little Caesars at 8118 Long Point earned six violations, which is downright stellar when graded on the Little Caesars curve. Violations included an employee not wearing proper hair protection, vent filters not cleaned often enough and, um, "Exhaust ventilation hood systems (including components) in food preparation/ware-washing area not designed to prevent grease/condensation from collecting on walls/ceilings/dripping into food/food-contact surfaces." Why does this remind us of Howl?

Someone attempted to dime out Sparkle's Hamburger Spot (1515 Dowling), but inspectors responding to the complaint found only three infractions: floors not maintained in good repair (probably could have told you that from the street); equipment/utensils not designed or maintained properly (not the worst violation on the books); and perishable food stored at temperatures not protecting against spoilage (all right, maybe worth spending some time correcting). No citation issued -- sorry hater(s).

During a consultative visit, Ethnic Treats (mobile, listed at 12010 Pine Pass Court) got written up for not identifying the business's name prominently enough on the unit. Not a bad start. And now we want to know the nature of the treats involved.

Inspectors turned up three violations at the bar at Sawyer Park (2412 Washington). The first was signage-related and the second had to do with not enough soap near hand-washing sinks. The third was more interesting: "Effective measures intended to minimize the presence of rodents/flies/cockroaches/other insects on the premises not utilized." Feel free to make your own joke about the presence of pests at a sports bar with valet parking.

Inspectors went to town on Ben Taub (1504 Taub Loop), looking at 27 different areas of the hospital over two days. Most inspections turned up nothing (good to know the employees of 5B MED/SURGERY are using their hairnets). The worst thing we saw was food equipment/utensils/single-serve items in 3C POST PARTUM were stored near sources of contamination (like babies?). Notable: Ben Taub's cafeteria got written up for the same not-taking-effective-measures-to-curtail-pests deal that Sawyer Park did. We're not sure which would be a more unfortunate place to find yourself.



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