Hold on to your Chopsticks! - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Restaurant Scorecard

Hold on to your Chopsticks!

Madison, AL.

Every week we're keeping score, telling you how some of the valley's "best" end up on the list of the "worst" when it comes to food health inspectors. This week, there's none lower than one popular Chinese restaurant in the City of Madison. Inspectors say they found so many critical violations they had to temporarily shut them down .

How low can you go? Try a 58! Madison County Health Inspector Gloria Branch says, "Whenever an establishment makes a rating below a 60 or 59, we consider that an imminent health hazard."

And were not talking "chop suey." Inspectors logged 5 major critical violations at China King.  Among their "dirty dining secrets", rat droppings, cold food and a host of other problems that forced inspectors to issue an emergency order on August 14th to shut the restaurant down. Branch says, "We state that all critical violations have to be corrected, plus they have to have a score of 85 or better to open."

It took them nearly 2 days to correct all the problems. The restaurant was reopened following reinspection August 16th.   But inspectors remind us, the problems found at China King are only a snap shot of that day. In the last 15 months, their average score was an 86. But "fortunes" changed and inspectors say lack of communications could be to blame. Chinese restaurant owners don't have easy access to interpreters like spanish speaking owners. "There are problems all over the county, when it come to that to have someone in the department to interpret their language would be helpful."

Each week, our test is based on a score of 100, anything below an 85 is considered failing. This week, East of Jordan falls well below that mark with a score of 66. Inspectors found 4 critical violations. Personal soft drinks in the food prep area and toxic items improperly stored.

Bobby G's Place in South Huntsville had excellent food temperatures, but inspectors say they also had problems with personal drinks in the food prep area and toxic cleaning stored improperly, their final score, 76.

Hardees in Russellville comes in with a low score of 77.  Lake City Diner in Guntersville, though they corrected their one critical violation replacing a hose to prevent a potential back siphonage problem, they still have to live with their score of 82 for the next 30 days.

Highway 72 Express in Cherokee wraps up this week's low scores with an 82 as well.

A thumbs up to this week's scroll of honor. School cafeteria workers are still making high marks. Perfect scores of 100 this week to Julian Harris Elementary, Falkville High School, Boaz Middle and DAR Schools. Lupita Mexican Restaurant in Athens, a near perfect score of 99. Ditto for Waterloo High School and Coffee Bean Cafe. Madison Academy in the City of Madison wraps up this week's high scores with a 97.

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