This time of year is a busy time for health department inspectors. (Photo: Olga Pavlovsky, Flickr)

Check out how area restaurants did this week on health inspections. 

Nooga.com highlights any restaurant that scored a 90 percent or less, as well as those that got a perfect score on the initial inspection.

There is explanation/context about the inspections at the end of this article.

Restaurant: Aquarium Foods 
Address: 2 Aquarium Way 
Score: 90
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/18 

Restaurant: Golden Corral 
Address: 1808 Gunbarrel Road 
Score: 90 
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/17 

Restaurant: Juice Bar 
Address: 
502 N. Market St. 
Score: 
Brought up from 90 to 95
Critical issues: 
Yes. One critical violation, which was food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized. 
Follow-up required: 
Done on same day as initial inspection
Date of inspection: 
5/17 

Restaurant: Uncle Larry's Hot Fish (at Finley Stadium)
Address: 1826 Reggie White Blvd.
Score: Brought up from 90 to 95
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was toxic substances not properly identified/stored/used.
Follow-up required: Done on same day as initial inspection
Date of inspection: 5/20 

Restaurant: Bones' Smokehouse (at Finley Stadium)
Address: 1826 Reggie White Blvd.
Score: Brought up from 89 to 99
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized. 
Follow-up required: Done on same day as initial inspection
Date of inspection: 5/20 

Restaurant: Lille Mae's Place 
Address: 4712 Dayton Blvd.
Score: 89 
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was lack of proper cooling time and temperature. 
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/23 

Restaurant: Tender Care University 
Address: 1001 Agnes Ave. 
Score: 89 
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized. 
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/23 

Restaurant: Taqueria Jalisco 
Address: 1634 Rossville Ave. 
Score: 87
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/17 

Restaurant: Trade Center Restaurant
Address: 1 Carter Plaza
Score: 86 
Critical issues: Yes. Three critical violations, including toxic substances not properly identified/stored/used.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/19 

Restaurant: Old Chicago Pizza and Taproom
Address: 250 Northgate Mall 
Score: Brought up from 80 to 100
Critical issues: Yes. Three critical violations, including lack of good hygienic practices. 
Follow-up required: No 
Date of inspection: 5/22

Restaurant: Mike's Hole in the Wall 
Address: 538 Cherokee Blvd. 
Score: Brought up from 87 to 92
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was toxic substances not properly identified/stored/used.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/22 

Restaurant: Edible Arrangements 
Address: 5756 Highway 153 
Score: Brought up from 86 to 96
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized. 
Follow-up required: Done on the same day as initial inspection
Date of inspection: 5/19

Restaurant: Nikki's Drive-In 
Address: 899 Cherokee Blvd. 
Score: 84 
Critical issues: Yes. Three critical violations, including lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/22 

Restaurant: Chattanooga Wing Co.
Address: 2109 McCallie Ave.
Score: 83 
Critical issues: Yes. Four critical violations, including lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/17 

Restaurant: Home Folks Restaurant 
Address: 8981 Dayton Blvd. 
Score: Brought up from 81 to 95
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including food not properly separated/protected. 
Follow-up required: No 
Date of inspection: 5/23 

Restaurant: Nineteenth Hole 
Address: 6801 Middle Valley Road 
Score: Brought up from 80 to 96
Critical issues: Yes. Four critical violations, including food not properly separated/protected. 
Follow-up required: No 
Date of inspection: 5/19 

Restaurant: Choo-Choo Bar-B-Que 
Address: 5936 Quintus Loop
Score: 75 
Critical issues: Yes. Five critical violations, including hands not clean/properly washed. 
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/18

Restaurant: Bourbon Grill 
Address: 2100 Hamilton Place Blvd.
Score: 75 
Critical issues: Yes. Three critical violations, including food not properly separated/protected. 
Follow-up required: Yes 
Date of inspection: 5/23 

High score highlights 
These restaurants got a score of 100 without a follow-up inspection:

  • Chattanooga Golf & Country Club Bistro, 1511 Riverview Road 
  • Sweet Melissa's, 1966 Northpoint Blvd.
  • Travelodge, 2361 Shallowford Village Drive
  • Epic Sports Bar & Grill (bar), 6925 Shallowford Road 
  • Belaire Catering, 73 Noah Reid Road 
  • Old Chicago Pizza and Taproom (bar), 250 Northgate Mall
  • Paco's Express Dogs and More (carts Nos. 1 and 2), 9823 Hixson Pike 
  • Serenity Child Care Center, 2103 Ivy St. 
  • Caldsted Foundation, 3701 Cherryton Drive
  • Milk and Honey (carts Nos. 1 and 2), 135 N. Market St. 
  • Hampton Inn, 2014 Hamilton Place Blvd.
  • Cakeman Catering, 3244 Wilcox Blvd. 

Six people with the health department are responsible for inspecting everything from pools and schools to restaurants and special events, such as Riverbend.

Although the number fluctuates as businesses open and close, officials estimated there are about 1,700 restaurants in Hamilton County. Each one has two unannounced inspections a year.

The reports are divided into two sections—critical and noncritical. 

Violations in the critical categories likely demand a follow-up, unless operators can correct the situation right then. For violations that can't be resolved quickly, restaurants have 10 days to correct them. 

A follow-up report isn't totally representative of how a restaurant did because they could have gotten a 70 the first time and then 10 days later corrected the problems and raised the score to a 90.

Members of the public often wonder why restaurants with low scores aren't immediately shut down, but inspectors can only do that if there is an "imminent health hazard," such as sewage backup. 

Another misconception is about "failing" grades. A score of 55 is bad, but the restaurant gets 10 days to bring it up. If the restaurant doesn't bring the score up, officials can initiate a closure process, although that is rare.