Handling ready-to-eat food with bare hands critical issue for restaurants with ‘F’s’

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DENVER -- Every week, FOX31 looks at health inspections at restaurants in metro Denver and along the Front Range.

Sam’s No. 3 -- Aurora

A Tri-County health inspector cited the Aurora location for nine critical  health code violations in January.

Among the mistakes:

  • Employees not washing hands
  • Cook handling ready to eat food
  • Heavily soiled fly strips

Armatas said,

“At any given moment something bad or good can happen," restaurant general manager Patrick Armatas, who added the restaurant is now up to code.'

"You either look at it and address and move forward in a positive direction and learning experience or hide away from it. And we looked at it and said we can do better. We know we are better than this and we want to prove we are better than this.”

The restaurant at 2580 S. Havana St. also closed the kitchen for staff retraining.

Sushi Katsu

The Aurora location scored nine critical violations in December.

The violations included:

  • Employee handling ready to eat food
  • Dried Seaweed stored on the floor
  • Food debris, dust and grime

“All items have been addressed and corrected," owner Jun Han said. "The Health Inspection Standards are important to our restaurant and we will continue to work diligently to meet or exceed the highest standards of care.”

Sushi Katsu in Aurora is at 222 S. Havana St.

Simms Steakhouse

The Lakewood steakhouse gets the "A" for this week after scoring two inspections with no critical violations.

Simms is on West Sixth Avenue Frontage Road.

How restaurants appear on our Report Card

Restaurant Report Card features health inspections in the city and county of Denver, Jefferson County, Weld County, Broomfield and restaurants under the jurisdiction of the Tri-County Health Department. The Tri-County Health Department includes Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas counties.

An inspection is a “snapshot” of what is happening during the day and time of the inspection. On any given day, a restaurant could have more or fewer violations than noted in an inspection. Also, at the time of an inspection, violations are recorded and can be corrected prior to the inspector leaving the restaurant. If violations are not corrected, a follow-up inspection is scheduled.

The criteria FOX31 Denver uses to give a restaurant a failing grade includes the evaluation of two unannounced inspections by county health inspectors. A failing restaurant must have five or four critical violations on their most recent regular inspection and five or four critical violations on the previous regular inspection. The restaurant may also fail for nine or ten or more violations in one inspection. Health inspectors may conduct critical or follow-up inspections, due to the number of critical violations found during a regular inspection. Those inspections may also be considered for our reports. We recognize restaurants with two regular inspections in a row, with no critical violations, by awarding them an A.

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