Inspectors from the Benton-Franklin Health District fan out across the Mid-Columbia to check on the sanitation practices of the region’s 1,000-plus licensed food service establishments, which range from full-service restaurants to coffee carts to gas stations.
These are the highlights for those that face re-inspection. All reports are posted online.
All food service establishments are subject to inspection and are rated on a state point system that’s based on the federal food code that guides everything from storage temperatures to how ingredients are stored in coolers. Establishments are rated on a 415-point scale.
Red points reflect more concerning issues that require immediate inspection. An establishment receiving 25 or more points on a routine inspection must be re-inspection. Blue points indicate situations that need to be rectified, but not immediately, such as an uneven floor.
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Restaurants are commonly faulted in two areas — dedicated hand-washing sinks and food worker cards. The sinks may not be used for any other purpose. And all employees must have their food cards within two weeks of being hired, no exceptions.
To view copies of the health department’s reports for all establishments inspected, go to tricityherald.com.
▪ Nuevo Amanecer, 1411 N. Fourth Ave., Pasco, Aug. 30, routine inspection, (40 Red, 0 Blue)
Notes: One of seven food worker cards expired, raw bacon stored above ready-to-eat produce, improper cooling procedures for prepared foods and sliced produce.
▪ El Charrito, 130 N. 10th Ave., Pasco, Aug. 23, second follow-up to July 21 routine inspection (30 Red)
Notes: Pan of cooked rice too deep for proper cooling, container of tomatoes too deep for proper cooling, needs to disclose to customers that foods may be served raw or undercooked.
▪ Pik-A-Pop #1, 1949 N. Fourth Ave., Pasco, Aug. 27, routine inspection (30 Red).
Notes: Three of six food workers lack valid worker cards; cooked items allowed to cool below 135 degrees in hot case. Mini tacos were 122 degrees; wings 107 to 120 degrees.
▪ Mr. Taco #0067, 1202 W. Lewis St., Pasco, Aug. 23, routine inspection (45 Red, 5 Blue).
Notes: No active management on site; pans and sponges in dedicated hand-wash sink; ready-to-eat shredded cheese stored in freezer next to raw meat products; improper cooling of stuffed peppers.
▪ Wendy’s, 2311 W. Court St., Pasco, Aug. 22, first follow-up to July 26 inspection, (30 Red), Sept. 1, second follow up (35 Red).
Notes (Aug. 22): Five of 22 food workers lack valid food worker cards; salad prep table had pan of mixed lettuce still being used 30 minutes after the expired time; pan of sliced tomatoes had no time marking.
Notes (Sept. 1): Person in charge unable to answer questions on compliance and unaware of location of food worker cards. No worker cards available. Salad prep table had tray of lettuce still being used 45 minutes after expiration and an unmarked tray, as well as tray of tomatoes, with no expiration mark.
▪ El Torito Mx, 420 W. Lewis St., Pasco, Aug. 31, routine inspection (40 Red, 3 Blue).
Notes: Both dedicated hand-wash sinks lacked paper towels and one lacked soap; raw eggs stored above rice, and raw pork meat stored above ready-to-eat foods; tongue meat being thawed under still water instead of running.
▪ S&S Petroleum, 1440 N. 20th Ave., Pasco, Sept. 2, routine inspection (40 Red, 0 Blue).
Notes: No worker cards on site; dedicated hand-wash sink had no soap and blocked with bottles in sink; corn dogs in warmer stored at 115 to 124.5 degrees, below 135 degree minimum.
▪ Pho Lao Laan Xang, 5610 W. Clearwater Ave., Kennewick, Aug. 30, routine (40 Red, 8 Blue)
Notes: Worker touched sliced tomato with bare hand; raw eggs stored above soaking noodles and a container of tempura batter; knife found between cutting board and prep cooler.
▪ IHOP #1753, 6511 W. Canal Drive, Kennewick, Aug. 30, routine inspection (25 Red).
Notes: Omelet batter on prep table not cold enough.
▪ Old Country Buffet #813, 6821 W. Canal Drive, Kennewick, Aug. 29, third followup to routine inspection (35 Red).
Notes: Dedicated hand-wash sink had no hot water; sweet potatoes held at wrong temperature.
▪ Yogurt Beach, 910 S. Columbia Center Blvd., Kennewick, Aug. 26, routine (30 Red, 0 Blue).
Notes: Food worker cards not available; paper towel dispenser at dedicated hand-wash sink jammed; cheesecake bites stored above temperature; milk stored above temperature; worker could not find thermometer.
Aki Sushi LLC, 321 N. Columbia Center Blvd., Kennewick, Aug. 16 (135 Red, 11 Blue).
Notes: Lack of managerial control; person in charge unable to give proper cook temperatures for chicken; food worker cards not available; worker moved between tasks without washing hands, then washed hands in cleaning sink rather than hand-wash sink; dedicated hand-wash sink blocked by buckets; raw chicken stored above raw shrimp and container of tempura saucel raw eggs stored above mixed pasta; no time marked for rice; cooked eel stored above safe temperature; various temperature violations, and no customer advisory on menu that animal products are served raw or undercooked.
Baan Khun Ya, 5109 Road 68, St. B, Pasco, Aug. 25, routine (40 Red, 0 Blue).
Notes: Lack of managerial control; employees unable to answer questions about procedures for cooling and reheating; not all food worker cards available; cooked rice stored at improper temperature; raw eggs stored above cooked meat.
Tacos Michoacan, 361 Wine Country Road, Aug. 24, follow up (45 Red).
Notes: Lack of managerial control; steam table containers not holding at proper temperatures; lettuce stored at wrong temperature, person in charge not monitoring for temperature; raw eggs stored above yogurt.
Hop Jacks, 4898 W. Hildebrand Blvd., Kennewick, Aug. 31, routine (40 Red, 2 Blue).
Notes: Not all food workers have cards; onions, beef, turkey, tomatoes, lettuce, guacamole and coleslaw held at wrong temperature; person in charge touched onion strings with bare hands.
Between the Buns, 3902 W. Clearwater Ave., Kennewick, Aug. 30, routine (35 Red, 0 Blue)
Notes: Person in charge did not know proper reheat temperature for hot dogs; no digital thermometer present; brats and dogs in steamer were stored at wrong temperature.