Cityscape

Free State Brewing temporarily closed after health code violation. It has reopened

What are the most common restaurant violations in Kansas?

The Kansas Department of Agriculture shared their top critical violations found during routine inspections at restaurants and grocery stores in Kansas. Critical violations can contribute to foodborne illness.
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The Kansas Department of Agriculture shared their top critical violations found during routine inspections at restaurants and grocery stores in Kansas. Critical violations can contribute to foodborne illness.

Free State Brewing Co. in Lawrence temporarily shut down recently for health code violations, but it has since reopened.

It had five priority violations during a Feb. 28 inspection following a complaint. Violations included live cockroaches in the kitchen area.

According to the Kansas Department of Agriculture inspection report, a husband and his wife were eating lunch and almost finished with their meal when they said a cockroach ran across their table.

“Her husband tried to smash it, but it ran off the table and then she stepped on it with her shoe,” the report noted. The insect was about an inch long. Though they didn’t see any other roaches, they wanted food safety to know in case there were more elsewhere in the restaurant.

During the inspector’s subsequent visit, more than 20 roaches were found in the dishwashing area in the middle of the kitchen and several in the beverage server station upstairs.

The brewery temporarily closed.

According to the report, Free State uses pest control services twice a month, most recently on Feb. 22. The inspector recommended moving small and large equipment out from walls and cleaning the areas, treating floors and sink drains, patching gaps and holes, and treating other areas.

“Like most professional food service operations, we rely on professional pest control specialists to assure our sanitary operations. We promptly called on them to address the situation,” said Chuck Magerl, owner and founder.

The brewery and restaurant at 636 Massachusetts is currently celebrating its 30th year in business.

It had no priority violations during a March 1 reopening inspection and was allowed to reopen.

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Joyce Smith has covered restaurant and retail news for The Star since 1989 under the brand Cityscape. She appreciates news tips.


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