Food & Drink

Dirty dining: This pizzeria had a roach problem. Inspectors shut it down for days

According to the latest inspection report of Manatee County, Michelangelo’s Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant on University Parkway in Sarasota was shut down for several days after an inspector found live and dead roaches on site.

Other Bradenton-area restaurants were cited for having dirty equipment on site and storing raw animal products improperly.

Here’s what inspectors found:

Michelangelo’s Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant, 2957 University Parkway, Sarasota

  • An inspector ordered that Michelangelo’s Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant be shut down on June 24 after finding signs of roach activity.

  • On June 24, an inspector observed approximately five dead roaches and five live roaches in the establishment. There was a roach egg on top of a detergent bin.

  • Floor drains/drain covers were heavily soiled.

  • There was a hole in a wall.

  • Single service articles were not stored protected from contamination. Corrective action was taken.

  • Two cooked pizzas that were on display were not protected from contamination. They were moved to a display cooler.

  • In a glass pizza display cooler, the ambient air temperature was 52 degrees and none of the three pizzas inside were at the required 41 degrees or below.

  • The certified food manager or person in charge lacked knowledge of foodborne illness and symptoms of illness that would prevent an employee from working with food.

  • A spray bottle containing a toxic substance was no labeled.

  • The restaurant was operating without a license from the Division of Hotels and Restaurants.

  • On June 25, an inspector observed approximately five dead roaches, five live roaches, three roach egg sacs and roach droppings too numerous to count. The restaurant remained shut down.

  • On June 26, an inspector observed approximately 11 dead roaches, two live roaches, one roach egg and roach droppings too numerous to count on plumbing near a stove. The restaurant remained shut down.

  • On June 27, an inspector observed approximately seven dead roaches and roach droppings too numerous to count on an outlet behind a dishmachine. The restaurant remained shut down.

  • On June 28, an inspector observed approximately four dead roaches. The roaches were discarded.

  • The restaurant was allowed to reopen after a second inspection on June 28.

Wasabi Steakhouse, 5770 Ranch Lake Blvd., Bradenton

  • A soiled dry wiping cloth was in use at the sushi bar and on the cook line, according to an inspector.
  • A cutting board at the sushi bar had cut marks and was no longer cleanable.
  • An ice scoop handle was in contact with ice. The scoop was removed and placed in a dishwasher.
  • An employee restroom was used as a storage area for items including paper bags and chemicals.
  • Curtains leading to the bar area were soiled.
  • An employee was observed washing hands with cold water.
  • Fried rice and fried shrimp were hot held at temperatures less than 135 degrees. A stop sale was issued and the foods were discarded.
  • Raw shrimp was stored over ready-to-eat garlic in a walk-in cooler. The foods were reorganized.
  • A manager did not know how to check the accuracy of a thermometer.
  • A spray bottle containing a toxic substance was not labeled.

Ham and Eggs Restaurant, 6850 15th St. E., Sarasota

  • No handwash sign was provided at a sink used by food employees.
  • Hot water was not provided at an employee handwash sink.
  • A manager lacked proof of food manager certification and no other certified manager was employed at the establishment.
  • There was a softball sized hole in a wall.
  • Dishmachine sanitizer was not at the proper minimum strength. Corrective action was taken.
  • A cook was observed washing a bowl without sanitizing it.

Editor’s Note: According to the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation, these reports are a “snapshot” of the conditions present at the time of the inspection and are public record. The agency is required to inspect every licensed restaurant at least once per year, but new and “high-risk” establishments tend to be inspected more frequently.

When an emergency shutdown order is given by an inspector, it must first be reviewed and approved by agency supervisors. In order for a business to reopen, an inspector will continue visiting the establishment daily until compliance is met. Some citations may include a financial penalty. Inspectors may also respond to complaints, which can be filed here.

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