Health inspector cites multiple violations – and 30 lives roaches – in 3-day closure of Ocala eatery

An Ocala restaurant was shut down for a little more than three days last week after a health inspector found 11 violations – three of which were deemed to be high-priority status.

A health inspector cited 11 violations – including seeing more than 30 lives roaches – last week when shutting down the Charlie Horse restaurant, located at 2426 E Silver Springs Blvd.

The health inspector visited Charlie Horse restaurant, located at 2426 E Silver Springs Blvd., on Tuesday, March 5 and reported finding more than 30 live roaches on a bar wall and near shelves containing bus pans, according to an inspector’s report on file with the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. The restaurant, which touts steaks, sandwiches, seafood and cocktails on its sign, was closed shortly after 2:30 p.m.

The other high-priority violations centered on issues with food items. Portioned raw beef was stored over onion rings in a walk-in cooler, while portioned raw chicken and beef were stored over potatoes in a reach-in freezer. And cold tomatoes and cheese were being held at 50 degrees at a reach-in table on the cookline – nine degrees higher than the cutoff of 41 degrees.

The restaurant also was cited with an intermediate violation over expired training for some employees. And the inspector listed seven basic violations, which included:

  • A build-up of food debris on hood filters, a wall and fans on the cookline, and gaskets on a reach-in make table;
  • Ceiling tiles and vents in the kitchen soiled with accumulated food debris, grease, dust or a mold-like substance;
  • Dead roaches found in a back chemical room and chest freezer containing glasses behind the bar;
  • An employee beverage container left on a food preparation table near clean equipment/utensils;
  • Employees’ personal food not properly identified and segregated from food items to be served to the public – yogurt on a shelf over cake in a reach-in cooler and milk and a dish on top of kegs at the bar;
  • An employee’s jacket sitting on a case of crackers, Nicorette gum on a drug storage shelf and a drink mix on a shelf above a prep table; and
  • A wet wiping cloth not stored in sanitizing solution between uses.

The inspector returned twice the following day and found five violations still in place. The restaurant then remained closed until the inspector returned this past Saturday and allowed the eatery to reopen at 7:28 a.m. with four violations still in place and a follow-up inspection required, the report says.

The inspector made a fifth visit to the eatery in a seven-day span this past Monday and cited only two remaining violations – the expired employee training and the build-up of food debris, dust or dirt on non-food contact services. The restaurant was then deemed to have met inspection standards, the report says.