The Howard County Health Department on Thursday released its findings after completing an inspection of Mimi's Cafe in Columbia on Wednesday. The inspection came after the department received numerous inquiries from people who had seen photos posted - anonymously - on the website Reddit that purported to show unhealthy conditions at the cafe. (To read the original story, click here.)
The veracity of the photos has not been confirmed, and health department spokeswoman Lisa M. de Hernandez said the inspection showed no critical violations.
She said the inspector did a comprehensive inspection yesterday, as is routinely done three times per year, and also looked at issues specifically raised by the anonymous posting. Therefore, two reports were released: one that addressed the specific issues raised by the anonymous photos, and the other that served as the standard monitoring report.
"What we saw in our inspections yesterday show that Mimi's Cafe is safe for the public and that it should be open," she said. "We found nothing that should be of concern to the public."
In response to the inspection report, the corporate offices of Mimi's Cafe, which is a chain based in Irvine, Calif., released a statement that said in part: "Our guests can be assured that our food is safe and of the highest quality, that our restaurants are regularly inspected by a credible 3rd party firm in addition to regular health department inspections, and that should any problem arise, Mimi’s Cafe will always take immediate action to resolve it. Mimi’s Cafe takes food safety and sanitation very seriously and is committed to providing a safe dining experience to all of our guests."
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