The Food Safety Authority of Ireland issued ten closure orders on restaurants in Ireland last month including one in Cork.
The Lal Quila restaurant in the centre of Douglas was issued with a Closure Order by the HSE on September 13 which was lifted on September 20.
According to the inspector's report, the restaurant was inspected in July with a follow-up inspection taking place in August and a further inspection took place on September 11 after receiving a pest control record detailing internal rodent activity.
"During the inspection there was no visible evidence of rodent activity inside the kitchen or other food areas however mouse droppings and gnawed cardboard was evident in the upstairs changing room," the report notes.
"There was evidence of significant non-compliances which pose an unacceptable risk to public health."
Amongst the issues noted by health inspectors were:
- Access to the handwash basin was obstructed by equipment.
- The walls of the cooking station were splashed with dried in food debris and grease.
- The ventilation canopy was covered in a layer of black congealed grease.
- Staff were not using the blast chiller on-site and were cooling two pots containing beef in curry sauce at room temperature.
- Food items were stored in the fridge uncovered.
- Spoons and other utensils were immersed in food while stored in the fridge.
- Utensils and knives were stored in a dirty yellow bucket.
- Staff could not identify allergens that were present in each dish.
- Dishes were declared on the menu as gluten-free but gluten is handled on-site meaning such dishes could not be guaranteed to be gluten-free.
Speaking about the Closure Orders nationwide, Dr Pamela Byrne, Chief Executive of the FSAI said the rate at which Enforcement Orders are required for rodent-related incidents and poor hygiene standards is disconcerting.
"With eleven Enforcement Orders in September, it was disappointing to see a number of these relating to the presence of rodents in food premises and also a number where the hygiene standards were very poor."
"Food businesses must ensure that proper pest control systems are in place to ensure satisfactory hygiene standards."