Two Restaurants Have Worst Inspection Reports, One Shut Down

Red Lobster on 1500 WSW Loop 323 in Tyler was inspected Oct. 17 following a complaint. The hot water heater was not working or even connected to supply pipes. The restaurant closed, but the restaurant culinary manager told the inspector Red Lobster's Dallas office instructed restaurant to re-open.

No score was given for the visit, but the permit to serve food was suspended.

On Oct. 18, a new hot water heater was working properly and the permit to serve food was reinstated.

Dakota's Chop House at 5377 S. Broadway in Tyler was inspected October 24.

Baked potatoes and garlic butter on a cooler rack was tested at 64-66F. It should be 41F or below.

Brenda Elrod of the Northeast Texas Public Health District says baked potatoes hold an even greater concern.

"Botulism is in the soil. So botulism can be on the potato. And on a raw potato, that's not a big deal -- but when you bake the potato, you can activate that botulism germ to start growing. If it's at the wrong temperature, it grows and it gives off that toxin, and it is that toxin that can make you sick," Elrod said.

In addition, the inspector noted raw meats above ready-to-eat foods. And the dish machine was not sanitizing. All problems were corrected at the time of the inspection. Total demerits: 22.

Recheck: October 31.

No certified food manager at restaurant.

All other problems corrected.

Total Demerits: 3

No further recheck ordered.

Morgan Palmer, reporting.