Two Darien Restaurants Get Worst Grade, ‘C,’ in Latest Health Inspection Reports

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Two Darien restaurants received a “C” rating, the worst grade in the town’s A/B/C ratings system, in the inspection reports released Thursday by the Darien Health Department.

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.

The department released health inspection reports for 10 food-serving establishments on Thursday for inspections that took place from Sept. 21 to 30. In addition to the two “C” ratings, five inspections resulted in an “A,” another three received a “B.”

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.

Here’s an alphabetical list of the most recently released health inspection results (an explanation of how this list is put together is immediately below it):

—Chipotle Mexican Grill — 71 Post Road — Sept. 30 —  Town Rating: A — State Score: 96

—Darien Seafood Market — 1941 Post Road — Sept. 25Town Rating: A — State Score: 93

—Juice Press — 72 Heights Road — Sept. 28Town Rating: A — State Score: 94

—NEAT Coffee — 20 Grove St. — Sept. 25 — Town Rating: A — State Score: 95

—Piedmont Associates — 152 Hecker Ave. — Sept. 21Town Rating: B — State Score: 87

—Post Corner Pizza — 847 Post Road — Sept. 30Town Rating: B — State Score: 88

—Rory’s — 416 Post Road — Sept. 25Town Rating: A — State Score: 93

—Scena Wine Bar — 1077 Post Road — Sept. 28Town Rating: C — State Score: 78 — Inspector’s Remarks: “Two coolers not at proper temperature, both above 51 [degrees]. Kitchen bain marie at cook line and small prep cooler by front pizza oven. All foods discarded; Many foods exposed, uncovered, or open packaging; sanitizer buckets left from overnight. Dirty wiping cloths on counters from this morning’s preparation; several dirty wiping cloths on prep counters; restroom hot water at 149 degrees; no soap at one hand sink and no paper towels at the bar hand sink; several unlabelled chemical spray bottles; many unlabelled granular [items], liquids, ingredients not in original containers; scoops stored in containers of foods with handles touching food; rusty cooler shelves; any [“many”?] flies in the kitchen and bar areas inside. This may be due to the side door being opened often for the outside dining.”  — Inspector’s Comments: “Walk-in was 38 [degrees]. Bar dishwasher rinse was 171 [degrees]. Coolers to be repaired today.”

Scena Wine Bar H.D. inspection Sept 29 2020

Image from Darien H.D. website

Part of Sept. 29 inspection report for Scena Wine Bar.

—Springdale Athletic Club — 2 Camp Ave. — Sept. 25Town Rating: B — State Score: 88

—Tengda Asian Bistro — Goodwives Shopping Center, 25 Old Kings Hwy. North — Sept. 29Town Rating: C — State Score: 85 — Inspector’s Remarks: “Bare-hand [used] at sushi bar upon entry; several bowls stored in the hand sink on the line, and unclean hand sinks throughout; no sanitizer on the line; rinsing items at the three-bay sink; interior of refrigerator unclean, bowls on shelf, grinder equipment [with] blade unclean; no soap at hand sink; food items not labeled throughout kitchen; chipped plates (kitchen and sushi bar) and tape on cracked sushi display plexiglas; grease dripping on the line, back door unclean, shelving, shelving for scoops; strong odor from prep sinks; hood dripping.”  — Inspector’s Comments: “Keep raw chicken and beef prep[aration] separate, COVID-19 self-certification not posted and required signage not posted, chairs must be 6 feet apart. Put [in] another Purell station, no bar seating! Sushi log must be accurately reported, label raw sushi items on the special menu. Cooling items in walk-in: broccoli. Yama Seafood Inc. raw fluke fresh — parasite destruction records? Escolar must be identified on menu. Sushi special menu without consumer advisory. Work on formalized training for all employees.”

Tengda Asian Bistro Sept 29 2020 inspection

Image from Darien H.D. website

Part of the Sept. 29, 2020 inspection report for Tengda Asian Bistro

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.

Additional information is given for restaurants and other food-serving establishments rated “C,” and for some others of interest to the public (like schools). 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.


See also:

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.


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.

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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