Bugs, bad food, moldy ice put 3 restaurants on radar

Restaurant Report for second week of June

By Melanie Lawson - The Morning Show anchor

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - There were no closures, but several restaurants were cited with violations over the past week that could make customers sick. Inspectors found mold, bugs and food that had to be thrown out because it wasn't safe. 

In St. Augustine, Casablanca on the Bay was cited with nine high-priority violations. 

The inspector noted the dish machine was not sanitizing dishes properly. They had to set up a manual sanitization station until it was fixed. The inspector also noted beef, milk, French toast and pancake batter was not at the right temperature. They also found ants crawling around the soda machine and eggs stored over spinach. Three days later, the inspector came back and cleared the kitchen to reopen.

Jacksonville Sushi House and Grill on Old St. Augustine Road was cited with seven high-priority violations. The inspector wrote he saw an employee prepping lettuce with his bare hands, sushi rice was found out of proper temperature and mold was in the ice machine.  The inspector made them throw the ice out.

There was also bleach stored on the same shelf as food. This violation could cause cross contamination and is against the rules. Four days later the inspector came back and cleared the restaurant with zero serious violations.

EJ's Pizza on Merrill Road was cited with four high priority violations. We talked with the owner who was very unhappy about the latest inspection. There were three flies in the kitchen and the inspector found a roach in the back of the kitchen.

There were also several items in the fridge that were not at the proper temperature. The inspector noted he talked with the operator on how to rearrange those items so that didn't happen. EJ's is still in need of a recheck.

We talked with the owner and she said they had just gotten a shipment and the flies flew in when the door was open. 

She said they do not have a pest issue and she showed pest control receipts to prove it.  She wants her customers to know that they take cleaning and food safety very seriously. 

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