The longtime Plaza restaurant at 450 Ward Parkway had eight critical violations during a July 13 routine inspection. It was temporarily shut down due to an infestation of mice and gnats.
The inspector observed gnats throughout the kitchen, the ware washing room and near the rear storage room, as well as some in the dining room. The inspector also saw “substantial mouse droppings” under the storage racks and on kitchen shelves. There also were two live mice and mouse urine in the storage room. It also had four dead mice and one dead roach.
The Melting Pot blamed the pest problem on a nearby construction site and issued this statement: “Our utmost concern is the well-being of all of our guests. We recently closed our location to correct health inspection violations and have corrected all issues in accordance to the health department’s specifications. We have conducted a thorough inspection and sealed any openings.”
It is scheduled to be reinspected on July 17.
The Melting Pot, a fondue restaurant franchise based in Tampa, Fla., was founded in 1975. It has more than 115 restaurants in 34 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico and the Middle East. It also has more than 17 international locations under development.
It opened in the 8,000-square-foot basement space on the Plaza in December 2001.