Restaurant Inspection Grades: How Did Your Favorite Altadena Eatery Fare?

See how local restaurants performed in county health inspections.

Dirty hands. Contaminated surfaces. Are you getting more than you ordered when you eat out in Altadena?

Food facility inspection results for the community, including any violations for which an establishment was cited, can be found online at the Food Facility Rating page at the Los Angeles County Public Health website.

Consumers can search the results for Altadena—as well as any city in Los Angeles County—and view current scores and the last date of inspection. You may also view past letter grades.

Of 63 restaurants or food-serving establishments in Altadena, all passed inspection. 

The only three that received lower than an ‘A’ were Dutch Oven, Oh Happy Days Natural Foods and ARCO am/pm mini market on Lake Avenue.

Some Problems Cited

Dutch Oven

  • Score: 80 (B)
  • Ready to eat food exposed to possible contamination
  • Improperly covered/labeled/elevated food
  • Wiping cloths – not clean/inadequate sanitizer/storage

ARCO am/pm Mini Market

  • Score: 80 (B)
  • Holding of PHF (Potentially Hazardous Foods) – multiple servings (major)
  • Clean/Sanitizing – food contact surfaces (major)

Oh Happy Day’s Natural Foods

  • Score: 85 (B)
  • Clean/sanitizing – food contact surfaces (major)
  • Ready to eat food – exposed to possible contamination

For more information on how food facilities are scored and graded, read the Retail Food Inspection Guide attached to this story in the media box.

Do these grades affect whether or not you will go to certain businesses? Share your thoughts below. 

local February 06, 2013 at 09:26 PM
You know you live in Altadena when ARCO AM/PM is listed as a 'restaurant'!!!
Jessica Hamlin February 06, 2013 at 09:37 PM
Local, While it may seem odd to see ARCO graded with restaurants, any business that handles food is included, so an ARCO in any other community would also be graded.
Nico February 07, 2013 at 12:17 AM
Jessica, not so much odd, as tellingly sad--that we don't have hardly any real restaurants up here to speak of. By the way, how about following up on the story of the person who wanted to open up an eatery on Allen but got engangled in typical County red tape. What happened to him? Did he give up and just open somewhere where the hurdles don't exist? The story was posted on Patch (I think, rather than Altadena Blog) a while back.
Chris February 07, 2013 at 12:21 AM
@nico: i wondered the same thing.
Hugo February 07, 2013 at 02:19 AM
Me too
not Carl Peterson lll February 07, 2013 at 06:31 AM
And there I was one Saturday evening, going to my favorite chinese food to go. It had changed names, but the food seemed the same. I was the last customer of the day I guess. One guy was standing on the counter where they cut the food. Yes his same shoes that were on his feet one day---on the cutting counter. Next he poured some cleaning fluid in the cooking wok, He put the cooking utensil, the same steel pad that they use on the grill all day and scrubed the back wall with it. Then the next guy came with the shrimp to be cooked, and placed it on the counter next to him. The cleaning guy started hosing the wall, splashing some of the water, hitting the shrimp. Then he Made a four second motion of rinsing the wok, which of course he then proceeded to put the already contaminated shrimp in......to cook me a wonderful meal. I was not mad by this point. It was a made for movie comedy. I called over the only girl that spoke english, explained what I saw. She did not look the least surprised or rustled. I asked her in a heart to heart sorta way, how do you keep customers like this. I have been coming here for 15 years and would rather you clean up the act. All she could say was that she understood, and will not charge me for not taking the food. I was intent on undercover filming it, but never did. Lake avenue,and Howard in Pasadena. IMPORTANT: This was three years ago and may be different by now. Try closing time on saturday to see. I have not been back
Dickinson February 07, 2013 at 06:19 PM
My understanding is that he gutted the bathroom before he had approval from the county and by gutting the bathroom and not revising it he had to revise his plan to make ADA accommodations. I don't think it was the County red tape but the State ADA requirements.
Dickinson February 07, 2013 at 06:21 PM
Apparently Altadena Patch only reports on the 91001 zip code. There is, in fact, a part of Altadena with the 91104 zip code and there are establishments in that area that did not get an A rating. Sure would be nice if Patch realized that the world is not 91001-centric.
Jessica Hamlin February 07, 2013 at 07:04 PM
Which establishments would those be, Dickinson? When I looked up "Altadena" on the County Public Health website those 63 businesses came up and when I just input 91104, 10 businesses come up, 8 of which are listed in Pasadena. The two Altadena businesses listed--Altadena Beverage and Armen Market--received an 'A.' http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/phcommon/public/eh/rating/ratesearchaction.cfm
Dickinson February 07, 2013 at 09:15 PM
91104 south of NY Drive, from Altadena Drive to Lake and, for the most part, north of Washington is Altadena ...it just has a pasadena address. But there is House of Cookies which was not above a 90. By the way, Armen's got a 90 which is only one point above a B and House of Basturma only got a 91 so to me that is a bit concerning. Thanks for checking though!
SteveB February 07, 2013 at 09:59 PM
Looks like it was Egg Roll Express that got the 91, not House of Basturma - which had two entries at 96 and 95. btw, that link didn't work for me - I had to go to: http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/rating/
SteveB February 07, 2013 at 10:02 PM
p.s., if you enter 91001, a lot of the businesses have 90's or 91's.


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