Health department cites two local restaurants

Following a sweep of inspections, two Oakland restaurants have been cited for violations by the Allegheny County Health Department.

The Allegheny County Health Department issued citations to Sushi Boat Asian Kitchen and The Bagel Factory on Feb. 18 and Feb. 24, respectively.

Sushi Boat Asian Kitchen, located at 128 Oakland Ave., was cited last Tuesday for numerous critical violations of the county’s Food Safety Rules and Regulations.

The county’s Food Safety Assessment Reports cited Sushi Boat for critical violations of the code, including a lack of protection of foods from cross-contamination, poor personal hygiene, presence of rat droppings and dead rodents on the premises, improper storage of toxic items and cooked food being kept at unsafe temperatures.

Sushi Boat has been closed since the Health Department issued the report.

The owners of Sushi Boat had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication. 

The Bagel Factory, located at 420 Craig St., was cited Monday for two critical violations following a series of three complaints since Feb. 18.

The popular breakfast spot was cited for mouse droppings in multiple areas of the store, in addition to improperly using rodent poison to try to curtail the problem throughout the facility.

The store has remained open, and a consumer alert was posted on the storefront.

A Bagel Factory employee said the store was closing at 8 p.m. on Monday — two hours earlier than normal hours — for inventory purposes. A manager had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.

On March 5, 2013, the Allegheny County Health Department issued a consumer alert placard at The Bagel Factory “due to recurrent evidence of mice.” The county removed the sign two days later after the store took corrective action, according to the Health Department’s website.  

Other restaurants have been cited in Oakland over the past year for food-safety violations. India Garden, located at 328 Atwood St., was temporarily shut down in June and again in October after cockroaches were found on top of the buffet, on the kitchen floor, among to-go containers and elsewhere.

The Porch at Schenley, located at 221 Schenley Drive, was investigated by the Health Department after a group of five customers or employees were contaminated with E. coli in October.

Re-inspection of the locations is pending, according to the Food Safety Assessment Reports.