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The Health Department gave the green light for Hibachi Grill to reopen on July 22.Facebook photo by HIBACHI GRILL & SUPREME BUFFET
The Health Department gave the green light for Hibachi Grill to reopen on July 22.

Facebook photo by HIBACHI GRILL & SUPREME BUFFET

Health Department working with Hibachi Grill operators after reopening

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The Springfield-Greene County Health Department is working with the operators of Hibachi Grill & Supreme Buffet to keep the north-side Japanese restaurant open after it was shut down for 12 days because of health code violations.

The restaurant - opened by Aaron Wu and Cindy Yeng at 1950 E. Kearney St. in May 2012 - closed July 10 after the Health Department found 14 critical violations, including live cockroaches in various areas of the restaurant and an inability of the person in charge to demonstrate sufficient food-safety knowledge, according to Springfield Business Journal archives.

The department gave the green light for the restaurant to reopen on July 22. Health Department spokeswoman Kathryn Wall said the approval followed Hibachi management's efforts, working with a consultant, to put new standard operating procedures in place; hire an exterminator to rid the eatery of cockroaches; fix plumbing and grease trap issues; institute time-control safety measures; and agree to undergo ServSafe training. The training program is designed to educate employees on proper food safety and handling practices, food-borne illnesses and more, according to ServSafe.com.

"We like this training because it is offered in a large variety of languages and is very interactive. We gave Hibachi their preference on how they would like to learn more about the food code and proper food handling procedures, and this is the training they chose," Wall said via email.

Hibachi management must complete the ServSafe class by Aug. 5, Wall said.

"We’re also working with them to fine-tune their standard operating procedures so that those rules are as doable and safe as possible. That continues to be an ongoing effort," she added.

The Health Department reinspected the restaurant July 28 and found one critical violation related to its hazard analysis and critical control points plan. According to the inspection notes, the HACCP plan was missing procedures for monitoring critical points at the eatery and who would verify the procedures. Hibachi Grill was ordered to submit a new HACCP plan including the procedures.

Brian Fong, Hibachi Grill general manager, declined on behalf of the company and its owners to be interviewed about the restaurant's closure or opening.

Hibachi Grill management appears to be actively marketing the restaurant. Today, the company posted half-price $20 gift certificates on Today's Deals, a NeighborNews online coupon service similar to Groupon.[[In-content Ad]]

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