Two Darien Establishments Get Worst Rating, ‘C,’ in Latest Health Inspection Reports [UPDATED]

Health Department Inspection Ratings Restaurants 11-17-17
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Two Darien food-serving establishments got a “C” rating, the worst in the town A-B-C ratings system, in the latest health inspection reports released by the town Health Department. Three other establishments were rated “A”, and two “B.”

Update, 11:02 a.m.: In addition to the inspections just referred to, Blue Wave Taco was just reinspected on Feb. 22 and received an “A” (more information below). The inspection occurred just as received reports from the department and wasn’t included in the weekly batch. It was brought to the attention of, so we’re including it in this update.

The inspections were done from Feb. 14 and 20.

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):

UPDATE, 11:02 a.m.:

Blue Wave Taco inspection Feb 26 2018

Report from Feb. 22 inspection of Blue Wave Taco.


—Convent of St. Birgitta — 4 Runkenhage Road — Feb. 16Town Rating: A — State Score: 97

—Duchess Family Restaurant — 306 Post Road — Feb. 17Town Rating: C — State Score: 83 — Inspector’s remarks: “Chili in hot holding unit, 129 to 135 degrees (not reheated properly) (reheated to higher than 165 degrees); no thermometer in four-drawer refrigerator (corrected); no sanitizer in wiping-cloth bucket; interior tops of microwaves not clean; hot water at bathroom hand sinks [at] 142 degrees (shall be no more than 115 degrees); front soap dispenser not working; torn gasket on bain marie; fan covers in walk-in cooler not clean; hood vents above fryers not clean; faucet leaking at wash bay of three-bay sink; floor not clean in basement around oil tanks.” — Inspector’s Comment: “Rating posted.”

Inspection Sept 17 18

Inspector’s remarks and comments for Sept. 17 inspection of Duchess Family Restaurant of Darien. NOTE: Quotations above were taken from the original, written report. The image above comes from typing that report into the Health Department website format, and in doing so, changes may have been made.


—The Goose — 972 Post Road  — Feb. 17Town Rating: A — State Score: 96

—New Beijing — Post Road — Feb. 17Town Rating: B — State Score: 92

—Scena Wine Bar & Restaurant — 1077 Post Road — Feb. 20Town Rating: B — State Score: 86

—Starbucks — 815 Post Road — Feb. 17Town Rating: A — State Score: 97

Woodway Country Club — 540 Hoyt St. — Feb. 14 — Town Rating: C — State Score: 82 Inspector’s remarks: “Salad fridge bain marie at 55 to 56 degrees product temperature. Other low-boy refrigerator: house-made caesar [salad] dressing at 45 degrees; chicken cooked and left on the counter to cool at 89 degrees and potatoes on the stove in a pot (no flame) at 88 degrees; no thermometer available during cooking/prep work on the line; not washing butter lettuce before use, on package it states “wash before use”; food uncovered/not protected in several areas of the kitchen; no hand washing from several staff members returning to the kitchen from a lunch break downstairs; no sanitizer set up on the line or any prep areas during inspection; rinse aid connected to three-bay sink. Incorrect chemical used to sanitize (corrected after identified during inspection); no soap or paper towels at bar hand sinks, two instances; open dumpsters near back door for food waste: no cover; evidence of rodent activity in downstairs dry storage area and fruit fly activity near the main bar (most recent pest control invoice requested).” — Inspector’s Comments: “Formal documentation of training for staff?? Latex gloves in use: There has been a ban since July 1, 2016. Three-bay sink discharging directly to floor drain: no grease trap?!? Par-cooking kitchen per staff, and executive chef says no, we do not par -cook.”

Woodway CC inspection feb 14 2018

Inspector’s remarks and comments in report from Feb. 14, 2018 inspection at Woodway Country Club.


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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