Health Department Roundup: Coreanos, Pondicheri, Ruggles Green and More
By today's standards, Pete Wells's November review of Guy Fieri's American Kitchen & Bar is ancient, up there with Hadrian's Wall and some other things you forgot after college.
Much more interesting than annoying food personalities. Much, much less search engine optimization value.
But there's apparently still mileage there, as evidenced by the parody menu a New York programmer created (with some help). The menu has entered the realm of the magic v-word that makes social media directors tremble in unholy ecstasy. But viral or no, some of these dishes would be really unsafe. According to the City of Houston, it's not okay to serve meat on wooden plates, let alone Velveeta out of a bidet. A Sammy Hagar look-alike? Don't even start.
Apparently it's also unsafe to have "Food not protected from potential contamination by dust / dirt / unclean equipment / utensils / coughs / sneezes / insects / rodents / flooding / drainage / drippage from condensation [WATCH OUT, NEW YORK TIMES!] / overhead leakage / unnecessary handling/toxic materials/damaged." This week Hubcap Grill (1133 W. 19th) got hit with that and three other violations: vent covers not easily cleanable/kept clean; no towels/hand-drying devices located near each hand-washing sink (corrected on site); and no soap available at each hand-washing sink (corrected on site).
Four violations isn't terrible, and fusion food truck Coreanos did even better. An inspection turned up just one violation: "Plumbing not sized/installed/maintained properly."
Pondicheri (2800 Kirby) didn't have such a good time, earning nine violations (but no citation) during an inspection last week. Issues included spoiled or mislabeled food; potentially hazardous food not cooled within proper timeframe; potentially hazardous food held at improper temperatures; poorly designed or maintained equipment; food stored under exposed water lines; and property not kept free of litter/unused equipment. That's a shame, because Pondicheri is pretty good. But you know what else is a little dirty? Making out in a fitting room at Tootsies, and you'd still do that. We'd all still do that. As an aside, did you know Tootsies sells one-size-fits-all thongs?
A couple blocks south, Ruggles Green (2311 W. Alabama) earned five violations last week. The city did not issue a citation. Problems included potentially hazardous food not marked with disposal time; towels used to dry equipment/utensils; clean utensils/equipment not stored in a way that prevents contamination; and equipment/utensils stored under water lines.
Finally, Au Petit Paris (2048 Colquitt) earned four violations last week -- "food establishment engaging in reduced oxygen packaging method not providing HACCP plan containing information specified"; dirty non-food-contact surfaces (corrected on site); employee consuming food in unapproved area; and potentially hazardous food not marked with disposal time (corrected on site).
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1133 W. 19th, Houston, TX