ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — When it comes to coffee, it’s all local at the Banyan Café.
The mom and pop shop along MLK in St. Pete offers up a full breakfast menu.
However, the restaurant faced a long list of violations on their latest visit from the health inspector, according to state records.
The restaurant was temporarily shut down August 20 with 37 violations.
The inspector documented a black or green mold-like substance inside the ice machine. An employee was spotted not properly washing their hands after working with raw food. There were temperature violations on the liquid eggs, milk and whipped cream. That's all along with live roaches found in the kitchen.
On Wednesday, 10News stopped in to check on conditions.
The restaurant’s owner had no problem giving us permission to take a look in the kitchen after we reached her on the phone.
“She opened it right back up,” cook Sylvester Johnson said. It was something very simple. It was nothing major.”
Johnson said he wasn’t there the day the inspector showed up but downplayed the closure and the roach issues documented by the state.
“There was something like one dead one. There was one single dead one that was back there in the back,” Johnson said.
But the state’s inspection report tells a different story. It listed 33 live cockroaches on the floor, near the utensil drawer, under the food prep table and even one crawling across a potato.
On our visit, we searched high and low but didn't see any roach activity.
“I came in and I pressure washed the whole floor all the way to the back,” Johnson said.
He said the restaurant got rid of a kitchen employee who wasn’t following food safety rules.
While we were visiting, we spotted employees repeatedly washing their hands.
“The same way I would like to be fed if I’m out there, that’s the way I treat people,” Johnson said.
He wants customers to know the previous problems are now gone and the kitchen is clean.
“We’re good to go."
You can take a look Banyan Cafe's full inspection history here.
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