KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The restaurant with the low-scoring health report is in Knoxville this week. There were several violations found that could potentially cause food-borne illness if not corrected.

Don Chuy’s Fresh Mex & Cantina, 2904 Knoxville Center Drive, Knoxville — Grade: 75, Follow-up Grade:  97

The grade is a 75 at Don Chuy’s Fresh Mex and Cantina. It’s at Knoxville Center Drive in North Knoxville, just off I-640. The restaurant passed inspection. Any grade 70 and above is considered passing.

In his report, the inspector said he watched an employee eating at the food preparation counter in the kitchen. This is not allowed. Also, the inspector said no employees preparing food washed their hands during his inspection. Hand washing is required whenever food is handled, or in between jobs.

If kitchen workers had tried to wash their hands, they would have found the hand washing sink blocked, according to the inspection report. Paper towels were also missing from the hand sinks.

There’s more — in the walk-in cooler, the inspector found moldy strawberries and broken eggs. The temperature of partially cooked beef at a preparation counter was 80 degrees. At that temperature, there is a rapid growth of bacteria. The inspector writes there was a heavy presence of fruit flies in the kitchen. Bugs are not supposed to be in kitchens.

The inspector has returned and all of the original critical violations were corrected. The new grade is a 97.

Top Scores of the Week

  • Sami’s Cafe, 9700 Kingston Pike, Knoxville — 100
  • Vidl, 111 E. Jackson Ave, Knoxville — 100
  • Five Cousins, 815 Merchant Drive, Knoxville — 100
  • Aladdin’s Cafe, 7025 Kingston Pike, Knoxville — 100
  • Taco Bell, 4854 N. Broadway, Knoxville — 100
  • Rocky’s Place, 6651 Hwy 411, Greenback — 100
  • Pizza Hut, 7224 Maynardville Pk, Knoxville — 99
  • The Listening Room, 2703 Teaster Ln, Pigeon Forge — 98

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated following the reinspection of  Don’s Chuy’s Fresh Mex and Cantina.