A report about a roach in a plate of Fettuccine Alfredo at the Olive Garden in Harlingen sparks an inspection by the health department.
A kitchen cop exposes roaches in multiple areas of the restaurant on August 8th including in the dining and food preparation areas.
Pest control records obtained by the Food Patrol show what action has been taken to kill the insects.
A re-inspection 4 days later then cleared Olive Garden of the sole problem.
But an employee who wishes to remain anonymous says the roaches remain, and until corporate makes changes to the "old building" the problem will never go away.
"Unfortunately our establishment is over 20 years old," the worker said.
The Food Patrol agreed to protect the person's identity for fear of retaliation.
The worker claims to love working at Olive Garden and wants corporate to realize change is needed.
"Everything is old and the only thing I can see as an employee is to just give us an upgrade," the worker said. "They're definitely going to remain there regardless of how many pest control treatments we get."
An Olive Garden corporate spokesperson, Hunter Robinson, says the restaurant is now slated for a full remodel but could not provide a specific date as to when the changes will take place.
"There is no ongoing pest issue at our Harlingen restaurant," Hunter Robinson, manager for media relations and communications said. "Both our most recent third-party audit and the City of Harlingen health department's inspection just last week found no pest issues whatsoever| our commitment to safety and cleanliness is something we pursue every day, and it is completely safe to eat in our restaurant."
Antojitos Mexicanos on 357 West Hidalgo in Raymondville is a repeat low performer with 24 demerits.
A kitchen cop finds off-temperature salsa, mayo and milk,
There's also evidence of smoking in the rear storage room.
Left over rice, beans and salsa aren't properly labeled with use by dates.
A cross contamination violation also pops on the report along with no soap or paper towels for proper sanitation.
Kato Sushi on 2017 West Expressway 83 in Weslaco is a repeat low performer with roaches as part of their 14 demerits.
Management says the insects turned up in the dining room area and that pest control has already corrected the problem.
This week's featured top performer with zero demerits is Church's Chicken on 2205 Nolana Avenue in McAllen.
The staff wants customers to know they mean business on clean.
Fabian Hernandez is proud to see his store's top performer sticker now on the door.
"Everything is clean," the manager said. "We follow everything with procedures and everything is good."
You know what the Food Patrol says to that-- "keep it clean!"
Weekly Low Performer List: (total # of demerits)
HarlingenOlive Garden 1802 W Lincoln (3, 0) *Roaches*
RaymondvilleAntojitos Mexicanos 357 W Hidalgo (24) *Off Temp Food, Leftovers Not Labeled*
WeslacoKato Sushi 2017 W Exp 83 (14) *Roaches*
Weekly Top Performer List: (0 demerits)
McAllenChurch TMs 2205 NolanaBurger King 1101 S 10thHavana Grill 500 E NolanaKohnami 2005 W Nolana
ElsaJack in the Box 409 E Edinburg
PharrPappadeaux 1610 W Exp
BrownsvilleCharro Chicken 2804 Boca ChicaCharley TMs Grill 2370 N ExpItalia Express 2370 N Exp
HarlingenPizza Patron 806 N 13thLa Botana Grill 902 DixielandLittle Caesar TMs 601 S Exp 83Capital City 501 S 77
MissionPizza Hut 2217 E Griffin Pkwy
AlamoSubway 1444 DurantaChina Fresh Express 1444 Duranta