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Donovan’s Pub Shut by Health Dept.

Donovan’s Pub at 57-24 Roosevelt Ave. (Phot courtesy of Donovan’s Pub)

July 1, 2011 Staff Report

Donovan’s, the famous Irish pub and restaurant that has occupied the corner of Roosevelt Avenue and 58th Street since 1966, was closed by the New York City Health Department yesterday.

The owner(s) could not be reached for comment. Donovan’s racked up a score of 66 violation points, when 27 or below is considered to be the passing grade.

The following contains the violations cited by the Health Department.

Violations from 06/30/2011 Inspection
Tip! “Critical” violations are displayed in red.
Violation points: 66
Establishment Closed by DOHMH. Violations were cited in the following area(s) and those requiring immediate action were addressed.

 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) Raw, cooked or prepared food is adulterated, contaminated, cross-contaminated, or not discarded in accordance with HACCP plan.
3) Appropriately scaled metal stem-type thermometer or thermocouple not provided or used to evaluate temperatures of potentially hazardous foods during cooking, cooling, reheating and holding.
4) Live roaches present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas.
5) Facility not vermin proof. Harborage or conditions conducive to attracting vermin to the premises and/or allowing vermin to exist.
6) Food contact surface not properly maintained.
7) Plumbing not properly installed or maintained; anti-siphonage or backflow prevention device not provided where required; equipment or floor not properly drained; sewage disposal system in disrepair or not functioning properly.

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58 Comments

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Woodside Resident

Oh, and thumbs up for the avoiding of the main point. Donovans failed numerous times on the health inspections.

Funny how you dont seem to elaborate on why they did that….

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Woodside Resident

@jeanne Some reason this came up in my web history so i decided to check it out, only to see your hilarious “theory” of why “rats the size of cats are running around”…….

Yea because of the fruit lady. LOL

That made my day.

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Jeanne

@ Woodside Resident, I find you hilarious!!!!! You should know the facts before you shoot your mouth off. The “Fruit Lady” has been there, and many many complaints have been made, not just by me, long before Donovan s was closed down. Not that I have to explain myself to you, but I am not a vindictive person at all!!! When you have rats the size of cats running around the street because of the sweat mess she leaves, then it becomes the residents right to complain. Oh and by the way, my name is Jeanne and I am not afraid to openly speak my mind!

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woodside resident

I find it utterly hilarious, how vindictive some people are. Because your old neighborhood bar / restaurant got shut down, and is a disgusting place ……. Some of you shoot off topic, and start bashing some fruit lady.
Everyone got the option to buy or not to buy from whoever, or wherever you choose to eat from. But to sit there and just totally ignore the facts @Donovans, and the stuff they found their. Turning a blind eye to it, and purposely trying to blind someone else….. is NOT the way to go about it.

Face the facts, donovans is dirty and disgusting. And failed at its ratings, NOT ONCE… NOT TWICE…… how many times ?? EXACTLY.

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angela

well i hope everybody asks to see their drinking glasses before ordering a drink and make sure your forks knives spoons dishes, etc. are spotless also (lol)

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43rd@43rd

I find those food carts to be disgusting. Just totally my opinion. For example – Where/when do they wash their hands?

My statement from DoH simply said that they don’t do ratings for those places (understandable) – but hopefully due to your complaints they’ll give notice/violation fines to the fruit lady. Nicely done!

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angela

went to the woodside street fair today on july 9, 2011 at 3:00 p.m. and noticed that Donovan’s was opened — there was a big sign on the door that stated we are opened — i am sure not ever going to be going there again have a nice day

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Jeanne

@43rd Many people have called 311 and the DOH has taken those complaints. They are going to send someone down here. According to them, even if you have a license, you must have the proper equipment. For example, You must have the regulated food cart, in this case fruit cart which must have umbrella. She does not, only a dirty plastic table and a dirty cutting board, which brings me to the next point. You cannot cut food or fruit in the street. It can become contaminated. She cuts the fruit all day long and the flies are all around. Lastly, she leaves a mess on the street at the end of the day and just leaves it like that. Oh, and one more thing. you cannot just do that anywhere you want, like in front of any store front. It must be approved. That is why you see all the food carts under the train station at Woodside. She is parked in front of the deli, where they sell the same fruits. He pays rent and taxes. A petition has been started to move her. All of this was directly from the DOH! Thanks for listening!

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43rd@43rd

According to the DoH website
“Letter grades are not being issued to mobile food vending units, temporary food service establishments…”

Thus the lady with the table is safe from the DoH but permanent establishments are not.

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Jeanne

That is my name, I don’t mine using my real name when I want to speak my opinion. Donovan’s is back in business!!!!!!!!!!!!yay that is where i will be tonight!

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Jeanne

@52nd St. I love the come back at sunny_south.
@ sunny_side south. Peppino’s has been here for more than 40 years. Everyone knows Peppino’s. They were closed down last year, the only place besides Donovan’s, it was not on any news station. I am very well aware that jack is not the owner, his brother is. He manages the place. It is my strong opinion, everyone has the right to have one. With that being said, if you don’t feel comfortable going back there, then don’t go. Its just that simple. Donovan’s will always do great business. I for one will be back as soon as it opens!!!!!!!!!!!!!!YAY DONOVAN’s

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se

I don’t buy that anybody’s persecuting Donovan’s. My wife and I live in Woodside, and we were headed there for a burger last Saturday when we found them closed with the Health Department notice on the door. We then walked back east on the south side of Roosevelt, then Woodside, and it was clear that there had been inspections all along that strip probably on the same day as the Donovan’s inspection, and all these other restaurants had passed with As. When the owner defends himself with a line like ‘show me any restaurant that doesn’t have roaches’ instead of owning up to the problem and saying ‘gee, we’re working hard to clean up and correct our errors,’ you can bet we won’t go back there ever. And of course they’ve been inspected repeatedly–they keep failing! They should be inspected repeatedly! To me, the improper handling and inadequate refrigeration of raw foods (probably means things like using the same cutting boards to handle raw meats and veggies) are the most horrifying violations. Bye bye Donovan’s!

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Anonymous

For general information: Jack does not own any part of Donovan’s.

Why are you so angry about Donovan’s? If you don’t want to go there, don’t!

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sunnyside_south

Jeanne, what are you talking about “leaking” it to the news?! this is public info that is available to everyone. its not like some classified info was leaked to the press in order to make Donovans look bad.

When a place as well known as Donovans (claiming to have best burger in NYC) racks up 71 points, chances are it will find its way into the news.

Love the injection of a little conspiracy theory. nice try.

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Jeanne

@ Neighborhood Observer, check this out, right after the DOH shut down Donovan’s, someone leaked it to the news, NY1 fox 5 ect. Smells like a rat to me!!!

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Jeanne

@ ask around, there you go, I told you were angry at Jack!!! about the woman selling fruits, that is also contaminated food. She is cutting the fruit on a dirty board, on a dirty table and outside of someone’s business who sells the same fruits, who is paying rent and taxes. Addi tonally, I bet I have seen you there on numerous occasions, probably smiling and shaking Jack’s hand!!!LOL
@ Raquel, I believe today or tomorrow THANK GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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ask around

@ G ….. good try, but thats the oldest excuse in the book. If ya believe thats the real reason, then i got some bridges to sell ya.

@Jeanne , nah not angry at all.. Not in the least actually. But what do you know about complaints ? Its different when you got someone struggling to make a dollar, (rather then robbing and stealing), who hasnt been issued these violations already… In comparison to, a well known Restaurant, in a tight community BLATANTLY ignoring the health code violations.
Yes the city/state makes money off of them….. But they dont make up these violations, and as someone posted earlier, they had times from the previous violation hit to fix these problems. They chose not to….. So yea, i guess I am angry at Jack when ya think about it, because i cant get a good burger now for a while, and we all should be mad….. Especially the regulars that go there. Our health was put in jeopardy by a man that we are all cherishing, and looking up to.

Jus a quick example, Ive done heating ventilation a.c. refrigeration work, ive been called to jobs in the past, where Health Dept shows up, prior to us arriving for a service call to a restaurant, lets say ie: their tempature wont drop in the walk in fridge and the problem only been occuring for 20 minutes, (food is still all good inside)
Some dept. offcials, can and will (legally) shut the restaurant down, I seen them do it, AND stay there till they EMPTY the fridge out, seen them cut open packages and packages of cheese, meat etc… and have them pour ketchup on it. (I guess some people would try to go outside after dept. officials left, and regain their lost merchandise) Point at hand is, jack had ample time to fix the problems. He didnt… They didnt jus waltz up in there and shut him down on a whim.

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Jeanne

At Ask Around. You seem like your angry at Jack for some reason. Most of the people in the neighborhood are supporting Donovan’s. Come to 61st between Woodside and Roosevelt. There is a woman selling cut fruits on a dirty table. Many many complaints have been made to the dept. of health and still they do nothing. Why? Simply because they cannot make enough money off of her so why bother!

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G

There is literally NO other (sensible & legit) reason NOT to accept Credit Cards.

How about not wanting to pay the ridiculous service charges? It’s his business, he can run it as he sees fit.

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Mike Novak

Mediterraneo on Queens Bvd is open and the hot heros and pizza are as good as ever.

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angela

well to update everyone on this Donovan’s Pub issue on the 7:30 a.m. news this morning (Fox 5) (July 4) Greg Kelly was talking about Donovan’s being closed down along with pictures of the place and the violations that went with the closing — even the best of restaurants in manhattan does not get this coverage — must be a slow couple of days (lol)

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ask around

For those who say Donovans pub was clean in ur dining area, and up to par, and enjoyable food…. yes you are right. But to sit and say that Jack was/is jus being cruelly or unjustly punished is a statement you cant back with facts. NONE of us, (unless one of us is a cook/server/employee of Donovans) can say what it looked like in the kitchen or the storage area. Or how good their refrigeration was. Health dept goes in for reasons, and once they find a situation, they do come back and press even harder.
As someone pointed out, Donovans had over a month from its previous violations to fix what was wrong.
So why not let JACK know, hes at fault for not bringing his place of business up to Health Dept. standards.

And lets not forget the countless years of money scamming the place pulls off. Remember folks, CASH ONLY. ….. and you get to hide ALOT of revenue. There is literally NO other (sensible & legit) reason NOT to accept Credit Cards. So not only did JACK just ignore the Health Dept and the violations, he should also be investigated by the feds.

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angela

if a place is filty then close it down and especially since they have been given plenty of time to correct these violations — but apparently Donovan’s think they can do whatever they want to do and this has been going on for years now — enough said on this

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Jeanne

At Randall, You hit the nail on the head!!!! and its a shame because Donovan’s had a bad winter with the economy the way it is. They survived on parties. Now that business is finally picking up, they do this on a holiday weekend. I am sure parties were scheduled that had to be canceled. Additionally, all the workers that depend on their money. I think the people of Woodside should protest this!

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Jeanne

Well, they have not closed any Chinese restaurants around Woodside. As a matter of fact, the only place that was closed for awhile was Peppino’s. Polos Mario’s has become so filthy and roaches crawling around all over the place and no one ever bothers them. That is just to mention one. I have been going to Donovan’s for 32 years and never seen any roaches or flies. No doubt restaurants should be kept clean, however what I am saying is that the dept. of health targets Donovan’s every month. It is also clear that they always find something to violate so the city can make money.

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43rd@43rd

If you look at Donovan’s a month prior (5/21) they had 67 violations! So they had over a month to clean up their act and didn’t. Glad they closed it.

Additional Violations 5/21 includes:
Mice & Filth Flies! Yum!

Full Report from last month:
Violations from 05/21/2011 Inspection
Tip! “Critical” violations are displayed in red.

Violation points: 67

Violations were cited in the following area(s).

Sanitary Violations
1) Hot food item that has been cooked and refrigerated is being held for service without first being reheated to 1 65º F or above within 2 hours.
2) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation.
3) Raw, cooked or prepared food is adulterated, contaminated, cross-contaminated, or not discarded in accordance with HACCP plan.
4) Appropriately scaled metal stem-type thermometer or thermocouple not provided or used to evaluate temperatures of potentially hazardous foods during cooking, cooling, reheating and holding.
5) Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas.
6) Filth flies or food/refuse/sewage-associated (FRSA) flies present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas. Filth flies include house flies, little house flies, blow flies, bottle flies and flesh flies. Food/refuse/sewage-associated flies include fruit flies, drain flies and Phorid flies.
7) Food not protected from potential source of contamination during storage, preparation, transportation, display or service.
8) Sanitized equipment or utensil, including in-use food dispensing utensil, improperly used or stored.
9) Facility not vermin proof. Harborage or conditions conducive to attracting vermin to the premises and/or allowing vermin to exist.
10) Pesticide use not in accordance with label or applicable laws. Prohibited chemical used/stored. Open bait station used.
11) Plumbing not properly installed or maintained; anti-siphonage or backflow prevention device not provided where required; equipment or floor not properly drained; sewage disposal system in disrepair or not functioning properly.
12) Non-food contact surface improperly constructed. Unacceptable material used. Non-food contact surface or equipment improperly maintained and/or not properly sealed, raised, spaced or movable to allow accessibility for cleaning on all sides, above and underneath the unit.
13) Other general violation.

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43rd@43rd

Roxy – from the DoH website:

“If you wish to report a possible case of food-borne illness or have a complaint about a restaurant, please call 311 at any time. If you are a food establishment operator and have questions about your grade or inspection results, please call 311.”

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43rd@43rd

In response to Jeanne and others –
They temporarily closed the chinese place across the street from me about two months ago, and the one a block down (between 43rd-44th on 43rd) still has a “B” rating. So they’re not just targeting Donovan’s they are inspecting everywhere.

It’s not about the city making money – it’s about keeping us safe. If these places didn’t have that many violations they’d stay open.

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Daniel

Over the years, I’ve eaten at Donovan’s many times. Never once did I get sick, the food is always excellent, the burgers are 2nd to none. The prices have always been very reasonable, too! I’ll be back there, maybe the first day they reopen! Thanks, Donovan’s for providing a great value for me and a pleasant atmosphere. See you soon!

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Randall

This is bad news. Makes me think that somebody did not pay the appropriate bribe.

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Roxy

How does one “report” an eating place that doesn’t display a Sanitation Rating? Can you phone 311?

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Neighborhood Observer

Ah, now it is clear. He stepped out of line, and someone is prodding him to get back. That, not the violations, make me sick.

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Jeanne

I am in Donovan’s all the time. The food is great and the ambiance is very family like. I can tell you that is all about the city making money. Why don’t they pick on all these Chinese restaurants around here and why do they not go after the other Irish bar restaurants on 58 and 61 Street. I won’t mention names but something about this stinks. I know Jack Donovan a very long time and this is all nonsense!!

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pomme

Harmony has a B, based on a 3/31/11 inspection. 26 points. In Feb., they had 35 violation points!

They are required to have the rating in the window–if not, $1,000 fine.

The first 3 are Critical Violations.
1) Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility’s food and/or non-food areas.
2) Food not protected from potential source of contamination during storage, preparation, transportation, display or service.
3) Sanitized equipment or utensil, including in-use food dispensing utensil, improperly used or stored.

4) Facility not vermin proof. Harborage or conditions conducive to attracting vermin to the premises and/or allowing vermin to exist.
5) Non-food contact surface improperly constructed. Unacceptable material used. Non-food contact surface or equipment improperly maintained and/or not properly sealed, raised, spaced or movable to allow accessibility for cleaning on all sides, above and underneath the unit.
6) Proper sanitization not provided for utensil ware washing operation.

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Roxy

When I phoned Harmony Terrace (on 41st Street) to ask why the restaurant has no Sanitation Rating displayed, the person who answered accused me of being a troublemaker and then hung up. Someone posted here recently that Harmony has a “B,” which I guess could scare some diners off. Many people will not patronize anything less than “A” premises.

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Roger_the_Shrubber

Has anyone watched the TV show Kitchen Nightmares? My favorite part is always when Chef Ramsay has a look at the kitchen and storage facilities and sees things that a starving goat wouldn’t eat.

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JP

Donovan’s closed. O’Neill’s burned down. All my old haunts are going. If they get Horgan’s I’m just not going to have any place to go.

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sunnyside_south

I’m w. you Holier – we used to order from Med once a month or so, but i couldnt do it gain. at least not in that case, w the 70+ violation points including things like no hand washing facilities, temperature problems, mice and roaches, etc.

but i also would be curious to hear what the owners of the restaurants have to say for themselves.

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manhattan resident

Haven’t eaten there in a while. And looks like I won’t for a while either. I wonder what happened.
Their food was always quite good!

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justin

This stuff is easy enough to fix, I think. It’s slightly offputting that they don’t own a meat thermometer, even aside from safety issues. How do you run a restaurant without a thermometer?

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Deniz

I noticed that Emilio’s on 43rd Avenue (125+ violations) and Mediterraneo on Queens Boulevard (70+ violations) are both open now. I too am curious what they do to open so quickly.

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widmark

No, across the street from the butcher shop, next to Cuckoo’s Nest. They say it’s a test for what they hope will one day be a Five Guys style franchise. I’m looking forward to testing it out, especially since I won’t be getting Donovan’s any time soon!

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Pat

OUCH, sorry to hear this. Donovan’s has been such a wonderful family place for soo many years .. Sooo many memories ……….

…Sure hope they get their act together and reopen soon……………..

@Widmark, Is Ottomanelli’s opening right next to their butcher shop ????

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sunnysider

It is shocking that this landmark restaurnat has been closed by the board of health. But I love the suggestion of this web site going back when they reopen.

I saw that mediterna pizza reopened I wonder how safe it is. I have eaten many times thoght the pizza was great.

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Holier-Than-Thou

Is there any chance the Sunnyside Post can do a follow up on these restaurants when they reopen? Ask them what they did to remedy their violations. How fast can a closed place reopen and how do they get approval from the health dept.? I can’t go to Mediterraneo again. I see it’s open but I’m not taking a chance. I have trouble going to restaurants that get Bs. That’s an ok grade in algebra but for a place serving food it just doesn’t cut it.

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Yankette

That’s just disgusting! Thank God I never ate there. I never thought their food and/or burgers were all that anyway.

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