Nooga.com highlights restaurant inspection scores weekly. (Photo: Karlis Dambrans, Flickr)

Check out this week’s restaurant scores.

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.

We note critical violations because those are the ones that are more likely to lead to illness.

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

Restaurant: Beast + Barrel
Address: 16 Frazier Ave.
Score: 80
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was a lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 12/28

Restaurant: Champy’s Famous Fried Chicken
Address: 526 Martin Luther King Blvd.
Score: Brought up from 83 to 98
Critical issues: No
Follow-up required: No
Date of inspection: 12/27

Restaurant: Uncle Larry’s Hot Fish
Address: 4767 Highway 58
Score: Brought up from 88 to 93
Critical issues: Yes. One critical violation, which was food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized.
Follow-up required: Done on same day as original inspection
Date of inspection: 12/22

Restaurant: River Street Deli
Address: 151 River St.
Score: Brought up from 87 to 97
Critical issues: No
Follow-up required: No
Date of inspection: 12/22

High score highlights

These restaurants got a score of 100 without a follow-up inspection.

  • Daily Ground at DoubleTree, 407 Chestnut St.
  • BBQ Rowe, 1119 Richard Ave.
  • Rita’s Italian Ice (mobile), 100 Market St.
  • Champion Christian Learning Academy, 7745 East Brainerd Road
  • The Coin-Op, 233 Martin Luther King Blvd.
  • Scenic City Catering, 1900 Reggie White 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.

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