Restaurant Report: October 14

By Heather Sullivan - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A popular pizza restaurant just closed down. It had six critical violations on two state health inspections in a row. But restaurant management says the place was scheduled to close before the inspections took place.

If you go to Pizza Hut at 11120 Midlothian Turnpike in Chesterfield, you'll see a sign that says its closed and inside its a ghost town. A few weeks earlier, the restaurant had 6 critical violations on a routine inspection, including that a food employee failed to wash their hands before engaging in food preparation.

The violations were repeated on a follow-up inspection three days later and the health department said to get them fixed. A district manager tells us the violations were corrected. And a Pizza Hut spokesman sent us the following statement, "The franchise of this particular restaurant made a business decision to close the restaurant when the lease went up on October 1. This was a planned closure based on the current business needs in the Richmond market. The restaurant was in satisfactory standing with the health department at the time of closure."

In Henrico, the Happy Mart Restaurant at 6006 West Broad street serves up international favorites.

"Some people come to eat, some people to buy stuff," said manager Carla Mendoza.

The restaurant had 4 critical violations on a state health inspection. The report says employees handled tortillas with bare hands. Manager Carla Mendoza says the problems were corrected on the spot, "We bought a handle to get the tortillas and sometimes we have to use some gloves."

She says they retrained staff to make sure dishes are sanitized and, said Mendoza, "we had to put labels on everything," showing us that they also make sure foods in the fridge are properly labeled and dated.

In Richmond, Becky's B&L Inc at 100 E. Cary Street had 4 critical violations. The report says corn, green beans, and gravy were not reheated to a sufficient temperature and time to eliminate pathogenic bacteria. All violations were immediately corrected while the inspector was still there. We contacted the restaurant but did not receive comment.

Want something good to eat? says you'll find it at Comfort Restaurant at 200 West Broad Street in Richmond. The online magazine gave the chef the Rising Star Award. Said Jason Alley with Comfort Restaurant, "They come in and do a tasting of the restaurant, do photographs. I think they tasted 100 people for this year's awards."

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