The New York City Health Department has closed another Upper East Side restaurant following its first inspection in more than two-and-a-half years. An inspector says they uncovered a number of violations, many of them critical, at a popular Asian-fusion spot— though a note in the restaurant’s window tries to blame the closure on a different reason altogether.
Located at 1109 Lexington Avenue, between East 77th and 78th Streets, Mighty Bowl is a hit with customers who rave about their Asian rice bowls. The fast casual restaurant has even earned 4.5 stars on Yelp.
A bright yellow closure order now hangs on Mighty Bowl’s front door.
“Closed by order of the Commissioner of Health and Mental Hygiene,” reads the notice stuck to the glass.
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During Mighty Bowl’s August 24th inspection by the Health Department, the restaurant racked up 68 violation points spread across seven different violations noted by the inspector.
Critical violations observed at Mighty Bowl include letting refrigerated foods get dangerously warm, hot foods held too cool, as well as food, supplies and equipment left unprotected from cross contamination.
The Health Department inspector also found evidence of live mice in the restaurant and even the personal cleanliness of workers was found to be inadequate.
Right next to the closure order on the front door is another note— this one from the restaruant itself.
“We are temporarily [closed] due to ceiling repair,” the handwritten message begins, “this problem is being addressed and will be fixed shortly.”
“We are expecting to re-open Tuesday,” the note continues, “thank you for your patience.”
It’s not clear whether there is a ceiling issue in addition to the Health Department closure, however, a worker could be seen cleaning inside the restaurant on Saturday.
The shutdown comes just over two and a half years since Mighty Bowl’s last inspection. In February 2020, before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic in New York City, the restaurant received just eleven violation points. The long gap between inspections have been the running theme among Upper East Side restaurants recently closed by the NYC Health Department.
Mighty Bowl’s other two Manhattan locations, in Midtown and Greenwich Village, both currently have ‘A’ ratings from the Health Department, after receiving inspections in March.
Upper East Site reached out to Mighty Bowl for comment, but did not hear back by time of publication.