Under Hudson Related Food Safety Seems To Get A Pass

Liukoushui Hot Pot Scores 2nd Bad Health Inspection: Is Hudson Related To Blame?

Updated 5 weeks ago David Stone
In June, we reported on Liukoushui caught preparing meat outdoors during a rain shower, adjacent to janitorial storage under a main building exhaust hood.
In June, we reported on Liukoushui caught preparing meat outdoors during a rain shower, adjacent to janitorial storage under a main building exhaust hood.
© David Stone / Roosevelt Island Daily

Last week, Liukoushui, the Hot Pot restaurant at 588 Main Street, scored as poorly in a second inspection by the Department of Health as they did in the first. Looked at broadly, failures at food service safety are no exception under Hudson Related's management.

On October 4th, DOH inspectors visited Liukoushui, which goes by the name Chongqing Hot Pot with the City, and gave them a rating nearly identical to the one they got in July. Both feature three "critical violations:"

Violation points: 22   Sanitary Violations
1) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation.
2) Food Protection Certificate not held by supervisor of food operations.
3) Food contact surface not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use and following any activity when contamination may have occurred.

This equals a B Grade, although the restaurant remains, officially, Grade Pending. They continue to violate regulations by failing to post that grade in their window.

Liukoushui Not A Exception

Failures to adhere to food safety regulations has become standard under Hudson Related recently, and those failures extend to other areas.

Liukoushui opened without registering with DOH, and did so only after The Daily reported on their being caught chopping meat outdoors near a garbage storage area, in the rain, and under a large building exhaust hood.

As its opening neared, Jupioca displayed no Building or Health Department permits. They still have not been inspected.
As its opening neared, Jupioca displayed no Building or Health Department permits. They still have not been inspected.
© David Stone / Roosevelt Island Daily

And Jupioca, opened months ago in Riverwalk Commons, has never been inspected. Similarly, The Sanctuary, opened September 30th as an "event space" is not even registered with DOH and served alcohol apparently without a liquor license. A records search in the Department of Buildings database did not turn up building or occupancy permits or applications for either at the time of opening. The Sanctuary appears not to have had a Fire Department inspection.

To be clear, other restaurants on Roosevelt Island play by the rules and absorb the cost of compliance. On the same day Liukoushui scored a 22, the same DOH inspectors gave Nisi and Piccolo Trattoria A ratings. 

In fact, the only food service operations here without A ratings are Liukoushui, Jupioca and The Sanctuary along with Wholesome Factory and Gristedes where, as grocers, they are covered under other laws.

Who's Responsible?

No one should be surprised that RIOC employs a duck and run strategy.

"That's a Hudson property" is the answer I got from them.

Later, RIOC's spokesperson told me to ask Kramer about The Sanctuary issues and, finally, settled on suggesting I contact the City's 311 hotline.

Do anything but ask RIOC to take responsibility.

Using an unresponsive contractor as a shield is not out of the ordinary for a State agency unable to control widespread Main Street bike violations over which they actually accept responsibility.

Hudson's neglect was brought up at RIOC's inattentive Real Estate Development Committee, earlier this week.

After Hudson president David Kramer danced lightly through a self-promoting report on Main Street retail, historian Judith Berdy asked an obvious question.

Can you at least make sure your restaurants get a health inspection before opening?

Kramer dodged, cheerily noting how much Hudson Related appreciates resident reports on violations. We have lots of ways in our contracts to hammer them about it, he said.

That was a non sequitur, deftly delivered

What he was saying, in reality, is, "No."

Hudson Related's decade-long failure at "shock and awe" in their Main Street Retail contract with RIOC may be a cause for taking a lax approach to new vendors, but added risks to public safety without penalty are another result. 

If you believe RIOC or our elected representatives will do anything about this, you must be new here. 

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