Charlotte’s 10 Worst Restaurant Health Scores in November 2019


Even though the Charlotte region’s restaurant selection continues to grow, so does our population, and some restaurants are taking advantage of this growing customer base by letting their health standards slide.

Some of the most common reasons for low scores were food handlers not washing their hands properly, contaminated food containers, and improper food temperatures (many restaurants are starting to use infrared thermometers to avoid this). You can see exactly what the inspectors look for on this blank copy of an inspection report.

These were the top 10 worst inspection scores in Charlotte for the month of November:

#10 Crispy Crepe

Scored 90 (A) on 11/20/2019

They had the following violations;

  • No Certified manager was onsite during the inspection.
  • Observed both food employees wash hands and then used same hands to turn off sink knobs and did not dry hands. This was in large part due to the sink no having an active working paper towel dispenser in the proximity.
  • Paper towel dispenser was not properly functioning at hand sink near back prep area.
  • Person-In-Charge was unable to provide records for undercooked salmon that is served.
  • Observed unwashed apples, oranges and other produce stored above RTE grilled chicken and other TCS/RTE foods in walk in cooler.
  • Hummus, perishable dressings, cooked onions and peppers were cold holding at 45-47F.
  • Cooked turkey bacon, sausage, tomatoes and shredded cheese were not dated inside flip top unit.
  • Cheese sauces in sauce containers were dated 9/14/19.

#9 Wendy’s #42

Scored 89 (B) on 11/14/2019 (rescored to 96.5 on 11/26)

They had the following violations;

  • Multiple employees observed changing gloves with no handwashing in between.
  • Multiple employees observed washing hands then proceeding to turn off faucet handles with bare hands.
  • Large ice machine interior and customer ice chute observed soiled.
  • Several items in hot holding drawers including grilled chicken, crispy chicken, and spicy chicken observed at 92F-110F. After further inspection, manager realized unit was not turned on.
  • Several items found in cold holding units/reach-in coolers above 41F.
  • Foods from walk-in cooler were placed in units for service.
  • Sliced cheese in both containers that has a variance for extended time hold is not being time stamped.

#8 Quik Shoppe #3

(gas station in South End with the 8th best fried chicken in Charlotte)

Scored 88.5 (B) on 11/5/2019 (rescored to 96 on 11/14)

They had the following violations;

  • Observed employee cracking eggs then moving to utensils used to serve RTE foods.
  • Observed employee handling raw chicken, changed gloves, and then moved to single serve items without washing hands.
  • Observed employee pick up soiled tongs off floor, transporting them to warewashing, then retrieving a new and clear pair of tongs to begin serving RTE food without washing hands or changing gloves.
  • Observed bologna, sausage patties, wings, etc. hot held below 135F
  • Observed container of cooked chicken gizzards (prepared day prior) without proper date marking.
  • Observed containers of meat with correct date of preparation but marked for disposal 8 days after preparation.
  • Observed box of potatoes in dry storage and boxes of raw chicken stored on floor in walk in cooler.

#7 American Deli

Scored 87.5 (B) on 11/26/2019

They had the following violations;

  • Observed cook handle raw steak with gloved hands and continued working at grill without washing hands and changing gloves.
  • Observed cook change gloves without washing hands between change.
  • Observed hot water at restroom hand sink only staying on for 2-3 seconds.
  • Observed raw chicken and raw steak stored in upright freezer over french fries.
  • Observed multiple TCS foods in drawer cooler > 41F. See item # 45.
  • Observed opened package of hot dogs and container of chili without date marks. overall date marking of food items observed so full points not taken.
  • Observed unlabeled spray bottle of window cleaner.
  • Observed spray bottle of window cleaner stored on drainboard of 3 comp sink.

#6 Old Pineville Premium Pub

Scored 87 (B) on 11/25/2019

They had the following violations;

  • Observed two open water glasses stored above facility food on shelf in cook line.
  • Observed one employee loading soiled dishes in dish pit and then unloading clean without handwashing.
  • Observed another food employee leave cook line, handle soiled handles on walk in and flip top without handwashing. Hands were wiped on soiled apron between hand dispensing salad ingredients.
  • Observed no handwashing sign at bar sink.
  • Observed cutting board and knife store in basin of handsink marked for handwashing only.
  • Observed opened bag of bread stored directly on high shelf in dry storage.
  • Observed buildup on the probe of the food thermometer, on the back side of slicer blade, on melon press, on table mounted can opener and on utensils stored as clean.
  • Observed cooked rice and mac and cheese hot held on top of stove and TCS foods below 135F in steam table without water. Mac and cheese was 137F.
  • Observed cooked green beans date marked 11/12 in walk in, reach in and at cook line and unlabeled chicken salad in flip top without date mark.
  • Observed house made sauces placed on time at room temperature without time stamp or written procedure available.
  • Observed missing disclosure on blue plate special menu.

#5 The Sandwich Club 

Scored 86.5 (B) on 11/19/2019

They had the following violations;

  • Observed several areas of facility in need of managerial controls including with cold holding and cooling.
  • Observed raw shell eggs stored over ready to eat food in walk in cooler.
  • Observed unwashed berries stored over ready to eat celery in the walk in.
  • Observed ice machine with black build up on deflector plate and inside of machine.
  • Observed tuna salad in walk in above 41F after more than 4 hours since preparation.
  • Observed chicken salad in walk in above 41F at 4 hours since preparation.
  • Observed reach in cooler with meats and cheeses, and prep top cooler holding food above 41F.
  • Observed corn chowder in walk in date marked for 11/8 and 11/12.

#4 Urban Cookhouse

Scored 86 (B) on 11/12/2019

They had the following violations;

  • Observed no certified food protection manager on site at time of inspeciton.
  • Observed front handwash being used as a dump sink and clogged.
  • Observed tray of cookies in rear kitchen made several days ago sitting out with no covers.
  • Observed marshmallow and peanut butter on top of sandwhich prep unit left open with no protection.
  • Observed ice machine in need of cleaning.
  • Observed shake machine in need of cleaning.
  • Observed boiled eggs in prep unit 1 , watermelon sitting on top of prep unit 2, salsa and salad dressings on front counter left sitting out salsa at 60 degrees, ranch dressing at 69 degrees.
  • Observed broccoli soup dated 11/3, cheese sauce dated 10/24, chicken salad dated 11/1, and grit garnish dated 10/31 held longer than 7 days .
  • Observed house made pickles made using hot brine method according to the recipe on site held for 1 month recipe states to hold three weeks.

#3 Supermercado El Mariachi 

Scored 86 (B) on 11/16/2019

They had the following violations;

  • Observed employee drink stored on food prep surfaces during food prep.
  • Observed several employee not wash hands between donning gloves after performing a different task.
  • Observed spoons in hand sink near walk-in cooler.
  • Observed strips of pork that were laying on metal rods with blowers on either side of the rod. It appears that facility is attempting to dry meat product.
  • Observed container of raw beef stored above drinks in walk-in cooler.
  • Observed cooked shrimp and snow crablegs stored next to containers of raw shrimp and crablegs with not barriers.
  • In a mechanical operation, the temperature of the fresh hot water sanitizing rinse as it enters the manifold may not be more than 194 F, or less than (1) for a stationary rack, single temperature machine, 165 F. Dish machine peaked at a temperature of 147 F after running several times.
  • Observed container of sliced ham in prep cooler that was 51 F.
  • Observed spray bottles of degreaser that were not labeled.
  • Observed several roaches crawling in dish machine in kitchen area.

#2 China Fun

Scored 85.5 (B) on 11/18/2019 (rescored to 91.5 on 11/27)

They had the following violations;

  • Employee observed donning gloves and did not wash hands prior.
  • Neither sink in kitchen had handsoap upon arrival of inspection.
  • Paper towels missing at handsink.
  • Sanitizer at three compartment sink measuring 0 ppm.
  • Can opener blade heavily soiled.
  • Observed cooked wings and General Tso’s chicken cooling again at room temperature since yesterday afternoon. Today, food was observed at 56 degrees.
  • Raw chicken wings, raw cut chicken, and raw beef all stored at room temperature in back of kitchen for extended period of time above 41F.
  • All foods in flip top unit including cooked pork, shrimp, chicken, chicken wings, and chopped cabbage for over 24 hours. Chopped cabbage and pork wontons also found in walk-in and reach-in cooler with no date marking.
  • Bottle of windex in clear spray bottle and detergent in clear bottle both observed with no labeling.

#1 Los Arcos Mexican Restaurant

3542 Mt Holly-Huntersville Rd, Charlotte NC 28216
Scored 83.5 (B) on 11/8/2019

They had the following violations;

  • Observed food employee wash hands then turn faucet off with bare hands.
  • Observed food employee BHC (bare hand contact) raw steak and put food on grill.
  • Observed PIC touching a whole cooked fish.
  • Observed handsink beside the prep sink with knives and other utensils inside.
  • Observed a bag of raw beef sitting on top of a bag of raw chicken.
  • Observed raw beef stored on a shelf above cooked vegetables.
  • Observed chirizo stored over vegetables. Raw beef stored over salsa. Raw chicken stored over RTE chicken stock.
  • Observed chicken in freezer with no packaging to protect it.
  • Observed seasame seeds in outside storage with no lid.
  • Observed celery and squahs stored directly on food shelves.
  • Observed unwashed avocados stored of RTE chips, chips were stored and covered in large containers.
  • Observed deli slicer stored clean with old food debris. Knive stored clean with old food debris.
  • Observed ice machine in need of cleaning.
  • Observed large containers of beans cooked from last night at 43-44. Beans have been in cooler all night. Did not meet cooling parameters.
  • Observed pico, tomatoe, lettuce, cheese on prep line above 41F below 45F.
  • Observed canned mushrooms at 65F, salsa at 52F, chicken in flour tortillas at 78F, cheese tortillas at 64F all sitting on counters and above temp.
  • Observed cold drawer underneath grill with ambient air 46-50F, beef 47F, chicken 48F, tomatoes 45F. All TCS food was put in there this morning at 10:30
  • Observed 4 large containers of queso with no datemark. 3 large containers of beans with no datemarking.
  • Observed 3 items on hot/cold lunch buffet on time, with time stamp and no written procedures, they do discard all food except hard shell tacos after 3.5hrs (11:30-3).

If you’d like to monitor health scores or do a quick search for a restaurant you’re about to eat at, check out North Carolina’s health inspection database here.