Restaurant Inspection Round-Up REDO

Sometimes, I will admit, I wonder if there’s anyone out there reading these posts.

And then, I screw something up. And find out that, yes, you are out there. And the teachable moments ensue.

Chris and Lisa over at We [Heart] Food blog about food. Specifically, their dinners. A typical post is a gorgeous picture full of tastiness, a witty conversation between them about the meal, and then *drumroll* the RECIPE. They also live around here.

Well, Chris left a comment on the Restaurant Inspections (RI) MEGA POST of the other day that made me bang my head on the desk and say, “DUH, of COURSE I’m wrong!”

Here’s the wrong-ness: For the first time on a RI post I decided to rank the restaurants, using the number of violations. I should have done it by using King County’s violation point system (emphasis mine):

Inspections are based on regulations to eliminate risk factors for food borne disease. Every violation of these regulations is color coded and has a numerical value based on the amount of risk they create.

Red critical violations: These are violations with the highest risk of causing food borne disease. One red critical violation equals an unsatisfactory inspection. Environmental Health Specialists work with operators to make sure that red critical violations are corrected before they leave the establishment.

Blue violations: These are violations related to the maintenance of the establishment and cleanliness.

  • 35 or more red critical violation points require a re-inspection within 14 days.
  • 90 or more red critical violation points require the establishment be closed.
  • 120 or more total (red & blue) points also requires the establishment be closed.

HOW THE MISTAKE HAPPENED: The online tool I was using to read the inspection reports (EveryBlock) does not differentiate between Blue (maintenance and cleanliness) and Red (highest risk for food borne illness). Argh!

Here’s how to do it RIGHT: Here is the list of restaurants again (most violation points to least) using the King County inspection results correctly:

The links in all the restaurant names now take you to their respective King County inspection histories, where you can see the evidence for yourselves.

In conclusion: Thanks for your help, Chris. And happy (and safe) eating, everyone.


  1. […] Restaurant Inspection Round-Up REDO (May 31, 2010) A retraction post, of sorts. Deciding to rank restaurants based on my faulty perception of how the King County scores said inspections caught Chris’ (We [Heart] Food) eye, and he called me on it. Never again! […]

  2. […] For a more in-depth description of  restaurant inspection scores, read our old post, “Restaurant Inspection Round-Up Redo.” […]

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