Behind the Kitchen Door: Health inspectors order halt to pickle, ice sales due to non-working hand-washing sink

Church’s Chicken in need of cleaning; Mexican restaurant employees caught not washing hands

Recent health inspections revealed a convenience store with a rodent problem, a Mexican restaurant where employees weren’t washing their hands, and a popular fried chicken chain in need of a cleaning.

SAN ANTONIO – Recent health inspections revealed a convenience store with a rodent problem, a Mexican restaurant where employees weren’t washing their hands, and a popular fried chicken chain in need of a cleaning.

While the three businesses got passing scores in the 80s, they still had several serious health issues that required attention.

Express Mart #2

Express Mart #2, located in the 1900 block of Southwest 19th Street, got an 80 on their recent health inspection.

According to the Metro Health inspector’s report, the ice machine had a black, mold-like debris buildup.

There was no hand-washing sink because it had been removed, so the inspector told the establishment to immediately stop selling pickles and bagging ice on site until the sink was reinstalled.

The plumbing on the ice machine also needed to be fixed to meet local health codes.

Another sink had dark, mold-like debris and several flies buzzing around it.

Rodent droppings were observed inside a walk-in cooler. The inspector ordered the business to clean up the droppings, remove damaged bags and provide access to a locked backroom.

A re-inspection was ordered.

Herradero Mexican Restaurant

Herradero Mexican Restaurant in the 5800 block of South Flores earned an 82.

The inspector didn’t see any employees wash their hands during the inspection. He also observed one employee grabbing cooked bacon and placing it on a plate without washing their hands or using gloves.

A metal rack used to store clean plates was soiled with dust and rust.

Seven violations were corrected during the inspection, but a re-inspection was still ordered because several certifications needed to be obtained or renewed.

Church’s Fried Chicken

The Church’s Fried Chicken at the corner of Culebra and Galm earned an 84.

The inspector noted packages of raw chicken were being improperly thawed in a standing bin of water.

The inspector also watched an employee change tasks, remove dirty gloves and put on clean gloves without washing their hands.

Vent filters over the fryers were coated with excessive accumulations of oil, grease, and food debris. Employees had no idea when the filters were last changed.

There was also a lot of trash and food debris throughout the business that needed to be cleaned up, and the floors needed a good sweeping and mopping throughout, the report noted.

A re-inspection was ordered.


Want to know who has good scores and who doesn’t? KSAT 12 has a new tool for that.

Just click this link, and it will take you to a new mapping tool we have showing the recent scores for San Antonio food businesses.

The reports go back six months and are frequently updated.

You can catch Tim’s BKD reports Thursday’s on the Nightbeat.

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About the Authors:

Tim Gerber is an investigative reporter and anchor on the KSAT Defenders team.

Dale Keller is senior news photographer at KSAT-12.