Health department temporarily shuts down 2 restaurants

DRAPER, Utah — There wasn’t a customer in sight at Aroma Fine Indian Cuisine on Wednesday, where the open sign had to change to a temporarily closed one.

“They just close it because my refrigerator is not working right. So, as soon as fixed we can open right away,” said Roma Obeid, owner of the Draper restaurant.

She can attribute her slow work week to the busy one health inspectors have had the last few days.

The Salt Lake County Health Department slapped Obeid’s eatery, as well as Amici in Cottonwood Heights, with a slew of health code violations, forcing both to temporarily close this week.

At Aroma, they found 11 violations, which included a lack of proper, working cold holding units.

“We’ve been in the business 8 years, and we know what we’re doing,” Obeid said.

Just the day before, inspectors found Amici had 17 violations. The restaurant’s owner refused to comment on this story.

According to Food Protection Bureau Manager, Jeffrey Oaks, the health department shuts down about 40 restaurants, temporarily, per year.

“Anytime there is a closure of a restaurant I think it’s significant because there is a facility out there that has not been operating according to the food safety standards that they should,” Oaks said.

But with just 16 inspectors overseeing 4,000 establishments within the county, determining which restaurants are violating codes doesn’t always happen quickly.

“I don’t think they’re slipping through the cracks,” Oaks said. “It’s just maybe they’re not being seen as often as we’d like to see them.”

For instance, inspection records show that prior to February of 2014, Aroma had not been inspected since December of 2012, something that Oaks believed could be attributed to a back log of work their inspectors have.

“It just requires a lot more work,” Oaks said. “And sometimes it requires us to maybe have to assess the risk of each establishment and determine which one we have to put our efforts into more.”

Following a second inspection on Wednesday, both Amici and Aroma were allowed to reopen.

Their full list of violations can be found below. If you would like to review the inspection history of other restaurants in the county, click here.

Amici:

  • The facility was operating in an addition to the facility that was not approved by the health department.
  • There is no certified/registered food safety manager.
  • Not all food employees have a current food handler card.
  • There is no hand wash sink convenient and accessible to the ware-wash area.
  • Employee’s beverages are not separated from food preparation areas.
  • Cooked eggplant is being held at 47 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Food is being stored in non-food grade containers.
  • Potentially hazardous and ready-to-eat foods that are prepared on-site and held for more than 24 hours are not date-marked.
  • The interior of the microwave is unclean.
  • Clean equipment is not covered to protect it from contamination.
  • Single-service items are not stored to protect them from contamination.
  • The ceiling above the ware-wash machine and the food preparation table, various wall and floor surfaces are not smooth, durable, easily cleanable and non-absorbent.
  • Exposed structure ventilation ducting below the ceiling is not smooth and easily cleanable.
  • Various surfaces are lined with aluminum foil, and linens.
  • Cabinetry is not smooth, easily cleanable and non-absorbent.
  • Non-food contact surfaces of equipment are made of unsealed wood.
  • The three compartment sink and mop sink, are not sealed to the adjacent walls.
  • The mop is not hung to air dry.

Aroma Fine Indian Cuisine

  • The restaurant does not have working cold holding units.
  • Raw meats are being held at 64 degrees Fahrenheit in the reach-in cooler.
  • Sauces are being held at 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Cooked rice is being held at room temperature at 62 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Cooked meats are being held in the refrigerator at 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Potentially hazardous food is being cooled in deep and covered containers.
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