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Restaurant inspections: Roaches, rodents, and raw duck feet

Five pounds of raw duck feet and another five pounds of seaweed were tossed into the garbage last week after a city health inspector returned to Joy Tsin Lau, the Chinatown eatery where, in February, 100 lawyers and law students were sickened.

The inspector took the temperature of the feet and found they weren't cold enough. At 44 degrees Fahrenheit, they were in what the USDA considers the "danger zone" where toxic bacteria can double every 20 minutes.

Inspector Thomas Kolb cited the restaurant for three foodborne risk factors and four lesser violations. The restaurant's owner did not return calls for comment on Monday.

Joy Tsin Lau has made some progress meeting sanitation standards in recent months following three years of chronically failing to meet basic health requirements. From a peak of 41 violations four days after the suspected food poisoning incident, Joy Tsin Lau managed to bring the number of serious foodborne illness risk factors to 0 in November. During its most recent inspection, on Dec. 10, the restaurant was cited for serious risk factors that included a cup of coffee left on a food prep table, food improperly stored outside, and eggs held at 62 degrees.

Other restaurants inspected last week included:

Craftsman Row, 112 S. 8th Street. An inspection during the lunch rush on Dec. 10 cited the former Coco's for five serious foodborne illness violations that included not having a food safety certified person on site at the beginning of the inspection. In addition, mouse droppings were found in the kitchen prep area and flies and roaches in the basement.

South Side Pizza Express, 740 Mifflin Street. A re-inspection Dec. 11 cited the restaurant for 11 violations including six foodborne illness risks that included food being held at bacteria-friendly temperatures. Lesser violations included dead roaches, dead and living flies, and widespread mouse feces.

Carolina Market, 2952 Ridge Ave., was ordered to "immediately cease and desist" on Dec. 11 after being cited for eight violations, including seven serious foodborne illness risk factors which included insufficient hot water, improperly refrigerated food items, and the absence of a person in charge.

Manayunk Brewing Co., 4120 Main St., A reinspection during the lunch rush on Dec. 11 cited the restaurant for six violations, five of which were serious foodborne illness risks including insufficient hot water, no soap and no paper towels at a handwashing sink and burgers held in temperatures known to promote the growth of dangerous bacteria. In addition, the inspector found mouse droppings in the kitchen, along with two live mice caught in traps.

For more analysis and reports about restaurant inspections by the Inquirer and visit the Clean Plates website at