The Health Department’s restaurant letter grades are an inexhaustible source of entertainment: Today, Crain’s confounds readers’ expectations by listing fancy restaurants that are dirty and non-fancy restaurants that are clean:
If New Yorkers assumed that fast-food eateries, chains or lesser known delis and cafés would rate poorly, they will be surprised to learn that many of the As given out so far went to such places as a Popeye’s Chicken in Flushing, Queens, a McDonald’s at 405 Sixth Ave. and a White Castle on East 103rd Street in Manhattan.
Jean Georges restaurant received 15 violations and was faulted for holding cold food above 41 degrees and smoked fish above 38 degrees Fahrenheit, while The Palm at 837 Second Ave. received 20 violations. The Four Seasons Hotel earned 17 violations, and SoHo Grand Hotel racked up 25. Balthazar restaurant in SoHo received 18 points, Amy’s Bread bakery on Ninth Avenue was hit with 29, and Tony’s Di Napoli on Second Avenue and East 83rd Street received a whopping 39 points.
An “A” grade denotes 0-13 violations, a “B” 14-27, and a “C” 28 plus. Fortunately, however, some fancy places are still clean. Thomas Keller’s Per Se “has been inspected four times since 2008 with inspectors continually finding zero infractions.”