Update • The Salt Lake County Health Department allowed this restaurant to reopen on June 13, 2018.
June 6, 2018 • A pipe “repaired with a plastic bag” and sink water “running throughout the kitchen” were among more than three dozen health violations that forced the closure Thursday of a Mexican restaurant in West Valley City.
Los Molcajetes, 4031 W. 4100 South, was shut down for presenting “imminent health hazards,” a report on the Salt Lake County Health Department website shows.
“Wastewater from the three-compartment sink is running on the floor throughout kitchen,” inspectors wrote, noting that “the drain pipe for the three-compartment sink is repaired with a plastic bag.”
There also was “no hot water available in the facility,” the report states.
In all, there were 40 violations, 23 of which were considered “critical” to human health.
The restaurant will remain closed until the owners can make the necessary repairs and health inspectors consider it safe for the public.
The report noted other problems, including:
• The manager in charge did not have adequate knowledge of how to maintain a clean restaurant to prevent food-borne illness.
• Potentially hazardous foods, including eggs, pico de gallo, queso fresco and pinto beans were being held at temperatures higher than 41 degrees, increasing the chance of bacteria growth.
• Cooked chicken, left out of temperature, was not discarded.
• Interior surfaces of a reach-in freezer are unclean with spilled chicken blood.
• A bag of onions and a box of soda are stored on the floor.
• A reach-in cooler is leaking onto the floor, and food is in standing water on the bottom shelf.
This was not the first time county inspectors had found problems at Los Molcajetes. The drainage system in the kitchen was not working during a routine inspection May 16, a report shows.
“Wastewater from the three-compartment sink is backing up into the kitchen,” the May report states. At that time, inspectors “advised and educated” the staff on what needed to be done to remain open.
However, during a follow-up visit this week, inspectors noted the problems had escalated.
The West Valley City eatery, squeezed between a barbershop and a grocery catering to Latinos, was known for offering quality Mexican food at an affordable price.
The Salt Lake Tribune reviewed the restaurant in 2016. At that time, critics gave it two — out of a possible four — stars.