9 South Florida restaurants shut by ‘too many to count’ rodent droppings, cobwebs, mold


Rodent droppings on a kitchen cutting board, cobwebs inside an unused barbecue oven, mold dripping into ice machine, flies landing on clean containers and employees tracking raw sewage into the kitchen were among the violations that forced state inspectors to temporarily shut nine South Florida restaurants last week.

The South Florida Sun Sentinel typically highlights restaurant inspections in Broward and Palm Beach counties from the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. We cull through hundreds of restaurant and bar inspections that happen weekly and spotlight places ordered shut for “high-priority violations,” such as improper food temperatures or dead cockroaches.

Sun Sentinel readers can browse full Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade county reports through our state inspection map, updated weekly (usually Mondays) with fresh data pulled from the Florida DBPR website.

Any restaurant that fails a state inspection must stay closed until it passes a follow-up. If you spotted a possible violation and wish to file a complaint, contact Florida DBPR here. (But please don’t contact us: The Sun Sentinel doesn’t inspect restaurants.)

1893 N. Pine Island Road

Ordered shut: Sept. 20; reopened Sept. 21

Why: Inspectors reported 36 violations (five high-priority), such as 60 flies swarming and “landing on clean sanitized containers, lids on uncovered cabbage, squash, onions, cooked open rice on shelves,” as well as one on “unwrapped silverware at front counter.” An employee’s personal beverage container was seen on a food prep table near clean utensils, and another employee had “no hair restraint” while prepping food. The state also red-flagged missing ceiling tiles and walls soiled with accumulated grease, food debris and/or dust. The restaurant was ordered to stop selling and toss its rice pudding, flan, ceviche and coleslaw “due to temperature abuse.” The next-day reinspection yielded six intermediate and basic violations. However, the restaurant was cleared to reopen.

1509 E. Las Olas Blvd.

Ordered shut: Sept. 20; reopened Sept. 21

Why: The state spotted 17 violations (two high-priority), including 15 live flies in “around floor drain in back prep area by dough mixer,” as well as two live cockroaches in the handwashing sink near the cook line ( the operator later killed and sanitized area) and on an “empty dough tray” at the kitchen sink. Also spotted: a “dead mouse on glue trap” around the cook line area and more than 100 dead flies trapped on a “glue trap above hand sink.” (An employee discarded the traps and cleaned both areas.) Finally, the state noticed two dead cockroaches, one “under shelves in back storeroom” and “on floor in back prep area” near the kitchen sink. The pizzeria reopened the next day after its second inspection revealed zero issues.

11419 W. Palmetto Park Road, Suite C

Ordered shut: Sept. 19 and Sept. 23; remains closed pending reinspection

Why: Inspectors found 18 violations (six high-priority), including a “spider inside cupboard above prep table” near the kitchen sink and a “spiderweb in barbecue cooker in kitchen” that hadn’t “been used for multiple months,” the operator told an inspector. The state reported six live cockroaches “on pots on prep table” next to the charcoal cook line, “under cutting board next to” the kitchen sink and next to the freezer in the kitchen area. They also saw five rodent droppings “on top of freezer cooler” an “on top of cutting board” and nine dead roaches in several areas, including the kitchen “on pot lid,” “on top of freezer in rear kitchen area” and “on floor in dining area underneath table.” Finally, the state saw the restaurant using newspaper (a non-food grade paper) to wrap green onions inside a food container. A reinspection on Sept. 23 found 10 violations, including the presence of more roaches and improper storage of bug spray in the prep area. The restaurant must undergo a third inspection.

6815 Johnson St.

Ordered shut: Sept. 20; remains closed pending reinspection

Why: Eight violations (one high-priority) included 46 rodent droppings “on top container lid,” “under table next to wine cooler” and “inside cabinet under hand sink” in the bar area. More droppings were seen on top of and “on floor under wooden table in hallway to restroom” “in dining room next to bar stools” and on the “top bar counter.” The restaurant was closed pending a followup inspection.

1558 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd., Suite No. 5

Ordered shut: Sept. 22; reopened Sept. 23

Why: Of eight violations found, the report cited six as high-priority. These include an infestation of 25 live cockroaches in the kitchen “behind flip top refrigerator,” “under fryer” and on “countertop by microwave.” Also found: about 10 dead cockroaches “under refrigerator by microwave” in the kitchen and under handwashing sink and steam table at the front counter. The restaurant was ordered to stop selling and toss its cooked cabbage, poultry, beef, cooked pasta, rice, cooked vegetables, cooked beans and peas “due to temperature abuse.” The restaurant’s reinspection yielded no new issues, so it was cleared to reopen.

1801 N. Federal Highway

Ordered shut: Sept. 21; reopened the same day

Why: Five violations (three high-priority) included “a pool of wastewater in hole around drain pipe in area outside behind kitchen,” and employees were seen “tracking water into the kitchen.” The inspection also cited “sewage/wastewater” backing up through the kitchen’s floor drains. Finally, the state discovered a “broken up and collapsed” kitchen mop sink and a dishwashing machine not using “chlorine sanitizer at proper minimum strength.” That same day, the state again cited one high-priority violation and two basic ones, but the restaurant was allowed to reopen.

5712-5716 N. University Drive

Ordered shut: Sept. 20; reopened Sept. 21

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Why: The report cited 17 violations (five high-priority), including “too many to count” rodent droppings (between 122 and 172) on shelves and floors around the dishwashing machine, “on cook line on shelves, floors, soda boxes,” and “around ice bin machine and under ice machine.” The inspector also “observed mold dripping into ice machine” and ordered the operator to toss the ice. The restaurant was also ordered to stop selling and toss its precooked mussels and clams, as well as lobster, Alfredo sauce and cooked corn “due to temperature abuse.” The restaurant reopened the next day after the reinspection yielded just one intermediate issue.

23 S. Dixie Highway

Ordered shut: Sept. 22; reopened Sept. 26

Why: Seven violations (three high-priority) included eight cockroaches “on exterior door of freezer in kitchen,” on the wall and on sauce bottles “at front counter in dining room,” and “on floor in front of stove in kitchen.” The inspection also found two dead cockroaches “in hand sink in kitchen” and “on floor in front of hand sink” in the same area. (The operator removed the roaches and sanitized the area.) Finally, the restaurant was cited for tilapia “served raw for ceviche,” because the fish “has not undergone proper parasite destruction.” The restaurant’s reinspection four days later uncovered two intermediate violations, but the restaurant was allowed to reopen.

4251 N. Federal Highway

Ordered shut: Sept. 22; reopened Sept. 23

Why: Five violations (three high-priority) included 40 flies discovered “landing on clean reusable lids under slicer in kitchen” and “landing on speed rack with wood bagel boards” near the kitchen’s cook line. The state also spotted 22 cockroaches crawling “in box of parchment paper for sheet trays” in the kitchen and on the wall and floor “in dry storage room.” The state found a single basic violation during the second inspection and Bagel Bar was able to reopen.



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