PINELLAS PARK, Fla. -- A Pinellas Park restaurant known for its authentic Mexican food was shut down not once, but twice in the month of November.
Inspectors with the Florida Division of Hotels and Restaurants shut down Señor Taco on Nov. 9 with 32 violations.
The restaurant was eventually cleared to reopen, but last week health inspectors returned and again shut the restaurant down Nov. 27, this time with 17 violations.
State records show the restaurant was written up for having raw eggs stored over the produce and employee handwashing issues.
The report shows one employee was spotted dropping an item, then picking it up, and continuing to handle tortillas without first washing their hands. Another employee was spotted touching his face while preparing food without washing hands.
The inspector also documented live roaches which were found crawling up the paper towel dispenser, by the ice machine, under the prep table, and on a counter by the flattop grill.
10News stopped in Thursday to attempt to find out if the restaurant had cleaned up its kitchen.
“We did,” restaurant owner Ninosca Jenkins said, saying all the issues were taken care of.
She eventually invited our camera into the kitchen.
“This is a very small restaurant,” said Jenkins are we squeezed into the kitchen.
Inside, we found soap and paper towels at the employee handwashing sink and no more cross-contamination issues in the fridge.
“Everything is stored separately,” said Jenkins, showing us into one of the reach-in coolers.
We also found no sign of additional insect activity, which was good news for Harriman who was on his way back to the restaurant to eat.
“That means they care,” said Harriman. “They want to be in business. They don’t want to just shut down and quit.”
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