Nooga.com highlights restaurant inspection scores weekly. (Photo: Damian Siwiaszczyk, Flickr)

Check out this week’s 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: Mission BBQ
Address: 1926 Gunbarrel Road
Score: 90
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 9/10

Restaurant: McAlister’s
Address: 2288 Gunbarrel Road
Score: 89
Critical issues: Yes, two critical violations including, food contact surfaces not properly cleaned/sanitized.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 9/6

Restaurant: Rafael’s
Address: 9607 Dayton Pike
Score: 89
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including food not properly separated/protected.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 9/5

Restaurant: Best of China
Address: 4340 Ringgold Road
Score: 86
Critical issues: Yes. Three critical violations, including lack of proper hot holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 9/10

Restaurant: Kacey’s Home Cooking
Address: 6921 Lee Highway
Score: Brought up from 86 to 96.
Critical issues: Corrected
Follow-up required: No
Date of inspection: 9/7

Restaurant: Portobello’s
Address: 4976 Highway 58
Score: 86
Critical issues: Yes. Two critical violations, including lack of proper cold holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 9/10

Restaurant: El Metate 3
Address: 9331 Dayton Pike
Score: 86
Critical issues: Yes. Three critical violations, including lack of proper hot holding temperatures.
Follow-up required: Yes
Date of inspection: 9/15

Restaurant: Chatter Box Café
Address: 1817 Market St.
Score: 73 brought up to 95
Critical issues: Yes. Four critical violations, including hand-washing sinks not properly supplied/accessible.
Follow-up required: Done on same day as original inspection
Date of inspection: 9/5

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

  • Maple Street Biscuit Co., 4077 Broad St.
  • CSLA, 6579 E. Brainerd Road
  • Dreamland Childcare, 613 N. Moore Road
  • Apison Elementary, 10433 E. Brainerd Road
  • Salsarita’s, 252 Northgate Mall
  • El Meson bar, 248 Northgate Mall Drive

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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