Dirty Dining: ePollito in Twin Lakes Plaza

Darcy Spears

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Dirty Dining: ePollito in Twin Lakes Plaza

CREATED Jul. 3, 2013

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- When you run a chicken restaurant, you hope your employees know how to safely cook the meat.

But as Contact 13 Chief Investigator Darcy Spears reports, that wasn't the case when inspectors asked questions at the eatery in this week's Dirty Dining.

ePollito Chef and Owner Gustavo Bera comes outside his restaurant as we walk up.

"Hi.  Welcome," he says.

"Hi.  You met me at the door.  I'm Darcy Spears from Channel 13."

ePollito in Twin Lakes Plaza on Rancho near Washington racked up 34 demerits at their last inspection.

High on the Health District's list of no-no's was some sour cream that was "best by June 15," but still in the restaurant's fridge on June 20.

"In this moment, it's in the trash," Bera says.

Health inspectors warned ePollito to keep better control of their inventory and not just because of the sour cream, but also because some produce was brown and wilted.

Darcy: Did you think that it was still good?

Bera says the produce may have looked bad, but they'd bought it the same week as the inspection.

The Health District also found a tub of cooked chicken left on the microwave at an unsafe temperature. Same with beef left on the counter.

The greasy paper towel inside the microwave didn't look good. Neither did the cutting board.

Inspectors docked them for utensils in tepid water, food stored uncovered in the fridge, prepared foods that weren't labeled or dated, and chicken improperly thawing in the sink.

But perhaps the strangest thing on this report is that the person in charge was "not knowledgeable about food safety -- in particular, the cooking temperature for chicken."

Darcy: And you guys do chicken. That's your business, right?  So why would someone not know the safe cooking temperature for chicken?

Gustavo: No, he maybe didn't understand.
Darcy: Maybe he didn't understand English?

ePollito still has their C grade.

Gustavo says they're ready for re-inspection.

But when we looked around, we found dollar bills on a food shelf.

Darcy: And what's the trash can doing in the freezer?
Gustavo: What's that?
Darcy: What's that trash can doing in the..?
Gustavo: It's for the chicken.

It was empty, but he says it's clean and he uses it to marinate the next day's chicken.

ePollito has called for re-inspection this Friday. 

If you're going out to eat this holiday weekend, you may want to check the inspection list first.

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