In honor of the NCAA Tournament ending, we're going to highlight some health inspection Cinderella stories. These are the little guys that lack citywide recognition but still have to conform to the same tough sanitation standards as the big-name restaurants. For these places, inspections sometimes result in relief; sometimes, in heartache and new hairnets. Life can be a real bitch.
Best of Filipiniana (9671 Bissonnet), a new family-run Filipino place in Westwood, was recently written up for improperly designed utensils, wall/ceiling in poor repair and some accumulated dirt. No citation. We've seen worse inspection reports on fancy places where they won't even give you a table if all you're wearing is an undershirt, even if it's a really nice undershirt that you got at JoS. A. Banks with a gift certificate your friend sold you. We'd rather have some authentic Filipino food, thanks.
Some Burger Joint (3227 McGowen) in Third Ward is sort of like the opposite of Duke, in that it does not rely heavily on rich white people. It got a change-of-ownership inspection last week, and good on the new owner -- SBJ only got written up for lacking an awning. Tame, especially considering the last owner scored several violations during a July 2009 inspection, including poor ventilation, bathroom doors that didn't close and a lack of sufficiently hot water. If their mediocre neighbors, the Cougar men's basketball team, could turn it around that much in two years, we'd be happy.
Angie's Country Kitchen (11708 Hempstead), a northwest-side counter service place, didn't have the happiest Thursday last week. It was written up for six violations, including a lack of a no-smoking sign; lack of a drain plug on waste receptacles; openings in the building not sealed to prevent insects from entering; and a dirty/somehow objectionable toilet area. Still, no citation was issued. It's kind of like the place got into the NIT, then got knocked out in the opening rounds -- could be worse.
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Weird-memory trigger of the week: Cunningham Elementary (5100 Gulfton) got written up for a metered faucet that didn't provide 20 seconds of water, as well as improperly sized/maintained/installed plumbing. If you've ever had to use an elementary school bathroom as an adult (we were working a weird job at the time and there weren't any kids around, all right?), all the damn plumbing feels improperly sized. We hope we never fall down that rabbit hole again.