One Restaurant Gets Its Second ‘C’ Rating in a Row in Latest Health Inspections [UPDATE]

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One Darien restaurant that received a “C” rating, the worst in the town A-B-C ratings system, in a March 4 inspection then got a second “C” rating on March 17 in the latest health inspection reports released by the town Health Department.

Two other establishments were rated “B”, and two more, “A.” A new restaurant that opened in January received a 95 state score but not a town rating.

— see update, below, under the listing for Roost.

The seven inspection reports released Thursday were based on inspectors’ visits on March 16 to 19. (Storms and inspections of nail salons in town have slowed down the number of food-establishment inspections in recent weeks, according to the department.)

Most Recent Inspection Results

Health Certificate Frosty Bear 01-19-17

Town Health Department ratings certificates are supposed to be displayed prominently, like this one at the Frosty Bear Cafe at Darien Library.

Here’s an alphabetical list of the most recently released health inspection results (an explanation for each part of the list, including links, is just below the list).

Keep in mind that a food-serving establishment with a history of good ratings may occasionally get a poor inspection rating, occasionally the best do, and every restaurant normally gets a few things wrong (an explanation of how this list is put together is immediately below it):

—Dunkin Donuts — Darien South rest stop, Interstate 95 — March 17 — Town Rating: B — State Score: 93

—Heights Pizza — 330 Heights Road — March 17 — Town Rating: C — State Score: 83 — Inspector’s Remarks: “PHF [potentially hazardous food] in glass front refrigerator: 46 to 49 degrees (moved to another refrigerator); air temp of glass front refrigerator: 51 degrees; food/drinks on floor in walk-in cooler, dry storage room; cell phone on shelf above prep table; less than 50 ppm [parts per million] chlorine in wiping-cloth buckets (corrected); take-out bags used to store bread; non-food-grade containers used to store food; faucet and drain pipe leaking at three-bay sink; cardboard/foil used to line some shelves; backpack stored on food shelf in back storage room.” — Inspector’s Comments: “Reinspection March 24.”

Heights Pizza inspection report

Inspector’s remarks and comments sections from the March 17 inspection report for Heights Pizza.

—Mama Carmela’s — 1981 Post Road — March 17 (the date on the hand-written report, but listed as “March 7” on Health Department website) — Town Rating: B — State Score: 90 (score is 91 on the website)

—Roost Darien — 1950 Post Road — March 19Town Rating: Not Given (see several inspection reports here: ) — State Score: 95 — [See several inspection reports here since the restaurant’s opening in January which hadn’t been released, no town ratings were given: March 7, State Score: 88; Feb. 13, State Score: 91; Feb. 6, State Score: 87]

[Update, 12:25 p.m., Friday: An explanation for the lack of a town rating for Roost from Darien Health Director David Knauf: “As a new establishment, Roost was operating under a 30 Day ‘initial’ permit. Under our regulations, ratings are not given to newly opened food service establishments during this period of time which is when we evaluate the food handling practices. Ratings are given when we issue the full ‘annual’ permit, which Roost now has.”]

—Subway — Darien South rest stop, Interstate 95 — March 19 — Town Rating: A — State Score: 95

—Subway — [It was unclear late on Thursday whether the Subway eatery on Heights Road or Darien North rest stop was inspected.] — March 17 — Town Rating: A — State Score: 95

—Zotos International — 100 Tokeneke Road — March 16Town Rating: B — State Score: 96

Dates link to the food establishment’s inspection report referenced here (when available, sometimes it takes a while to get posted online), and Darien’s own A/B/C ratings link to a Web page showing several of the restaurant’s recent inspection ratings.


See also:


For restaurants and other food-serving establishments rated “C,” and for some others of interest to the public (like schools) additional information is given. When we provide that information here, then words within brackets (“[ ]”) have been added for clarity by; semicolons (“;”) separate individual comments by the inspectors. Each comment separated by semicolons is about a particular violation that triggers a deduction of one or more points from a perfect state score of 100.

How Darien’s Food-Serving Places Are Rated

Restaurants in town are rated under the Darien Health Department’s own A/B/C ratings system. Health inspectors also use the state health code regulations to score restaurants, with a perfect score set at 100, and demerits (of 1 to 4 points each) for various code violations.


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The Darien system takes into account problems that are ongoing, so a restaurant scoring higher than others on the state scale may actually get a lower score on the Darien scale.

Health Department Health Inspections Health Reports

The “A”, “B” and “C” letter grades a restaurant gets in its last inspection will be prominent on these certificates, which must be posted where customers can see them, and you can use your phone and the “QR” code to the right of the letter grade to get to the department’s ratings website for more information.


You can find the past several inspection ratings under the Darien ratings system for food-serving establishments along with copies of inspection reports, including state health code scores on this website.

Any establishment actually deemed unsafe can be closed by the town Health Department until violations are fixed. Town Health Director David Knauf says that has never happened in the time he’s been with the department.

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