Roaches, rodents, failing on probation: Restaurant closures, inspections in Riverside County, July 9-15

Roaches, rodents, failing on probation: Restaurant closures, inspections in Riverside County, July 9-15

Here are the restaurants and other food facilities that Riverside County Department of Environmental Health inspectors temporarily shut down because of imminent health hazards between July 9 and 15, 2021. If no reopening date is mentioned, the department had not listed that facility as reopened as of this publication.

Sushi Zen, 1525 E. Ontario Ave. Suite 108, Corona

  • Closed: July 13
  • Grade: 66/C, failing
  • Reason: Failing an inspection on probation. The restaurant had four critical violations: Multiple employees didn’t wash hands. Numerous items of food were at unsafe temperatures, including raw seafood in a cooler that wasn’t keeping cold and cooked seafood in a warmer that hadn’t been turned on. Food was contaminated, including lemons that had gotten moldy and sushi rice that an employee scooped up with a dirty wiping cloth. And some food-contact surfaces weren’t clean; one employee said they didn’t know how to sanitize dishes. Among the 14 lesser violations, there were flies landing on food-contact surfaces and the restaurant had to throw out 50 pounds of sushi rice that had been left out. This was the restaurant’s fifth failing grade since 2020 and fourth closure this year. Two closures in March were for not having hot water and a third in May was for failing its first inspection after being placed on probation. To reopen, the operator would have to correct all violations and pay double the fee to purchase a new permit.

Pho Tho, 40250 Murrieta Hot Springs Road Suite 101, Murrieta

  • Closed: July 13
  • Grade: 81/B, failing
  • Reason: Cockroach infestation. Visiting in response to two cockroach complaints, the inspector found live roaches — one among the clean serving utensils and others in the kitchen, a storage room and the front waiting area. There were also dead roaches in several areas, as well as flies landing on food-contact surfaces. There were two other critical violations, for utensils being dirty and food being at unsafe temperatures. Last August, the restaurant failed an inspection and was closed for a week because of cockroaches. It now faces an administrative hearing.

Sushi Miguel’s Style, 12625 Frederick St. Suite 1, Moreno Valley

  • Closed: July 13
  • Grade: 84/B, failing
  • Reason: Insufficient refrigeration. The walk-in refrigerator was room temperature inside and “smelled of mold/musk” because of water buildup and mildew. A reach-in refrigerator and the sushi bar cooler also were not keeping cold, and the food in all three units had to be discarded. There were two other critical violations, for the ice machine having heavy brown mold inside and dishes being washed without sanitizer. Among the three other violations, raw chicken was sitting out at room temperature, which the inspector called “gross negligence of food safety.”

Joyce’s Sushi, 36101 Bob Hope Drive Suite E1, Rancho Mirage

  • Closed: July 13
  • Grade: Not graded
  • Reason: Cockroach infestation. The inspector visited in response to a cockroach complaint and saw two nymph roaches running across a floor, multiple live and dead roaches on a sticky trap in the same area and many more dead roaches throughout the facility. The owner said roaches tend to come into the restaurant during the summer, and he conducts his own pest control rather than using a professional service.

Allsup’s Convenience Store, 1703 N Main St., Riverside (partial closure)

  • Closed: July 9
  • Grade: 85/B, failing
  • Reason: Rodent infestation. The inspector found several dead rodents in sticky traps, plus droppings on the shelves of prepackaged food for sale. Among other violations, there was mold in the ice machine and no soap in the restroom. The store was allowed to keep selling prepackaged items but not prepared food or beverages until the rodent problem was eliminated.

Non-closure inspections of note

Here are selected inspections at facilities that weren’t closed but had significant issues.

Mariscocos Culiacan #2, at 16760 Palm Drive Suite 2 in Desert Hot Springs, was inspected July 14 in response to a foodborne illness complaint. It received a failing grade of 80/B with one critical violation, for five pans of cooked meat and rice being at unsafe temperatures. Among the 12 lesser violations, there were multiple flies inside, containers of food weren’t being stored protected from contamination and there were areas in need of cleaning.

The Canyon Cowboy, at 31504 Railroad Canyon Road in Canyon Lake, was inspected July 14 and received a failing grade of 85/B. When the inspector arrived, the facility’s water wasn’t quite hot enough, but the water heater was adjusted and there was no closure or points lost. There were two critical violations. Food in a holding unit wasn’t being kept hot enough and dishes weren’t being washed properly — two dishwashers weren’t dispensing sanitizer and two dishwashing sinks also didn’t have sanitizer. Among the five lesser violations, there were flies near an open trash can and numerous fruit flies in the bar, and the floors, walls and some equipment needed cleaning.

The restaurant at Desert Hot Springs Spa, at 10805 Palm Drive in Desert Hot Springs, was inspected July 13 and received a failing grade of 81/B with one critical violation. Food was at unsafe temperatures inside two refrigerators and a freezer that were impounded. Among the 12 lesser violations, there were rodent droppings behind equipment in all three food storage rooms, and the floors, walls, ceilings and cooking equipment needed cleaning. This was the restaurant’s third failed inspection since 2019 and it was shut down twice last year for rodent infestations.

Chris Burgers, at 28325 Winchester Road in Winchester, was inspected July 13 and received a failing grade of 82/B with two critical violations. Food was at unsafe temperatures in two refrigerators that were impounded; about 50 pounds of hamburger toppings and 9 pounds of ranch dressing had to the thrown out. Also, dishes weren’t being washed properly. This was the restaurant’s fourth failed inspection in the past three years, and it was closed briefly in May because of a sewage backup.

Brooks Bar, at 6720 Van Buren Blvd. in Riverside (in the Van Buren Golf Center), was inspected July 13 and received a failing grade of 82/B with two critical violations. A few items of food were at unsafe temperatures, and one of the coolers was impounded. Also, the bar had hired a person to make tacos once a week, and he was serving meat that had been marinated at home, which had to be discarded. Among the eight lesser violations, two sinks didn’t have hot water, and the facility was using an unapproved air fryer and skillet to cook eggs. The bar was told that the taco vendor could continue grilling meat outside but all other work must be done in the kitchen, and the vendor needed to use prewashed and cut produce because there is no food-prep sink on site.

Updates from past weeks

Fisherman’s Market and Grill, at 235 S. Indian Ave. in Palm Springs, which was closed July 8 because of excessive heat in the kitchen, was permitted to reopen July 9 after the air conditioner was repaired. It passed an inspection with a score of 92/A.

About this list

This list is published online on Fridays. Any updates as restaurants are reopened will be included in next week’s list.

All food facilities in the county are routinely inspected to ensure they meet health codes. A facility loses four points for each critical violation — and may have to close if the violation can’t be corrected immediately — and one or two points for minor violations. An A grade (90 to 100 points) is passing. Grades of B (80 to 89 points) and C (79 or below) are failing and typically require the proprietor to make improvements and be re-inspected.

For more information on inspections of these or any restaurants in Riverside County, visit To submit a health complaint about a restaurant, go to or call 888-722-4234 during business hours or 951-782-2968 after-hours.

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