201 Clinton Street.
In the last few days, Va Bene Pizza, 201 Clinton Street, called it quits. Over the weekend, the metal gate was down and the restaurant’s signage had been removed. Last summer, the pizza place (located just below East Broadway) was shuttered by the Health Department, but the business reopened and did a lot better in followup inspections. Phone calls to Va Bene in the last 48 hours have gone unanswered.
Just a note to our readers to clarify a story we wrote in August about two LES pizzerias that drew criticism from the city health department: Va Bene Pizza at 201 Clinton St., which was shut down after an inspection (and later reopened) is not affiliated with the pizza chain owned by Hakki Akdeniz, which was covered in the same article. Akdeniz tells us that a website showing a joint menu for Va Bene and his Famous Hakki Pizza outlet at 170 Rivington St. is incorrect.
Each month, on the second Wednesday, we post a report of restaurants in the 10002 ZIP code that scored 28 points or more–the equivalent of a “C” grade–on their health department inspections the previous month. We also call out establishments that excelled, by earning three points or fewer. August proved a difficult month for several notable local restaurants—among them, Beauty & Essex, Kuma Inn and Falai (which is now closed)—as well as a handful of popular nightlife spots, such as White Star, Gallery Bar and Foundation (which was shuttered after an Aug. 19 inspection).
For details on how the city grades food establishments, see the guide (PDF). Because of the way the city’s online search function operates, we cannot link directly to individual reports here, but you can visit the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s website, type in the name of any restaurant and view the details of inspectors’ findings for all recent visits. For past months’ reports, see our Restaurant Report Card archives.
Here’s the report for August.
Va Bene Pizza, 201 Clinton Street.
Va Bene Pizza, at 201 E. Clinton St. near East Broadway, was shut down by health inspectors Tuesday after receiving 81 points for sanitary violations.
Va Bene was cited for eight violations, six of them rated critical. The critical violations included not providing a toilet for either either employees or patrons, the presence of mice, improper holding temperatures for cold foods, and food that was “adulterated, contaminated, cross-contaminated or not discarded” appropriately.