Dirty Dining: Monte's Pizza

Darcy Spears

Dirty Dining: Monte's Pizza

CREATED Apr. 3, 2013

North Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- It's "no comment" from the pizza place on this week's Dirty Dining.  A place that was shut down by the Health District and a place where Contact 13 Chief Investigator Darcy Spears easily spotted violations when she dropped by.

Remember the classic Dean Martin song, "When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that's amore!"

Well, there was very little amore from health inspectors for Monte's Pizza on Simmons and Ann in North Las Vegas.

A March 20th inspection left the place closed down with 42 demerits.

Inspectors called it "dirty" and "unkempt." Two words you don't want to hear associated with the place where you're going to eat.

Inspectors found food debris throughout the facility. There was mold under the floor mat in front of a leaky sink and on the wall above it.

In fact, the only thing that's not in the health report is roaches and that's pretty surprising considering the pictures that health inspectors took.

Pictures like expired buttermilk and cream -- one of which was two weeks old.

Cut eggplant and cucumber were stored face down on the soiled edge of the prep table at room temperature.

Food was open and subject to contamination in the kitchen and in the fridge.

Grocery bags were being used to store dough balls.

And if that's not enough, unpackaged pizza boxes were left on the dirty floor of a back room.

When inspectors arrived, no one had a health card and no one was able to answer any food-related questions.

When we arrived, they couldn't answer our questions either.

"I'm Darcy Spears from Channel 13. We're here for our Dirty Dining report from when you guys were shut down by the Health District and I need to talk to the person in charge."

The girl behind the counter says the guy we need to speak to isn't there.

"Is there somebody in charge right now since there always has to be a person in charge according to the Health District?" Spears asked.

The girl just shook her head and shrugged but agreed to go call the owner, leaving us to wait, while one customer -- who was much happier to see us -- asked questions.

Darcy: This place is on Dirty Dining this week.
Diners: Whoa!

While we're waiting, we spotted more food debris on the floor, and two sets of tongs hanging on the oven handle. Both are violations Monte's was written up for by the Health District.

Inspectors also watched a food worker using bare hands to pull burned food off a spoon, then returning the spoon to the pan he'd been scraping.

The cutting board, ice machine and meat slicer were soiled.

Clean dishware and kitchen ware were caked with excessive food debris. And it's no wonder, since inspectors say they didn't use soap or sanitizer during manual dish wash.

Finally, here's hoping the red splotches inspectors photographed on a cook's jacket were pizza sauce and not something else.

After waiting awhile, we're told the owner doesn't want to talk to us and we're asked to leave the restaurant.

Monte's was re-inspected the day after they were shut down. They were allowed to re-open with a 9-demerit "A" grade.