Burrito King hit with $1,250 health department fine

The owner of a Lawrence Mexican restaurant has been fined after the state says it found repeated health violations at the business.

July 2, 2008


Burrito King's owner owes a $1,250 fine after health inspectors in April uncovered several health code violations.

In documents released Tuesday, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment said it had fined Burrito King as a civil penalty for violations at the restaurant, 900 Ill., as uncovered during inspections April 18 and April 29:

¢ An employee failing to wash hands after touching bare human body parts other that clean hands or arms, and after "engaging in other activities that contaminate the hands."

¢ Failing to adequately protect stored foods.

¢ Failing to adequately keep potentially hazardous foods properly cool.

¢ Failing to sanitize utensils and food-contact surfaces of equipment before use and after cleaning.

Also documented during the inspections, but not leading to fines: an employee using bare hands to handle ready-to-eat foods; failing to convey sewage to a disposal point through a system that had been properly maintained; keeping a pesticide on site that is not approved for use in a food establishment; and failing to maintain a sink's sanitizing solution at a safe level.

Burrito King has not yet paid the fine, which was due June 19, said Mike Heideman, a spokesman for the department.

Also fined by the department was Super 8 Motel, 303 Montana Ct. in Leavenworth. The hotel has paid its $500 fine for operating from Jan. 2 through April 18 without a proper lodging license.


Greg Yother 9 years, 10 months ago

My favorite B-King story: Went to get a couple of breakfast burritos for me and the wife. I ordered simply a #1, but the wife had a special order:beans, eggs and cheese only. The gal working the drive-through couldn't really speak English all that well; she could definitely understand "#1" but had trouble with the special order. My mind wandered back to the two hazy semesters of Spanish I took 16 years ago. In a moment of clarity, I joyfully exclaimed "¡solamente: frijoles, huevos, y queso!" (REALLY basic Spanish, I realize). She seemed very relieved and gave me a big smile. It was the most fun I ever had ordering a meal. By the way, of all of my visits, that was the only time that the staff had trouble understanding me; I just assume they were just short handed that time and that poor gal got stuck at the drive-through. .As far as the taste, I've only had the breakfast burritos, and I have yet to taste one better. I also think the salsa is excellent. The violations seem fairly minor; I worked at a restaurant and the whole "wash your hands after you scratch your eyebrow" is really hard to control. And I'm not TOO concerned with failing to dunk the dishes in bleach after they are thoroughly washed; I don't do that at home; does anybody? And it sounds like they simply could have failed to put refrigerated ingredients back in the cooler fast enough after use; not necessarily left out all day:possibly just slightly longer that the Health Dept. requires. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad the standards are high, and they really need to comply, but I don't necessarily equate these particular violations with a place that is a disgusting nasty pit.

Greg Yother 9 years, 10 months ago

Clarification: "I'm not too concerned with failing to dunk the dishes in bleach ASSUMING THEY ALDREADY HAVE BEEN thoroughly washed." ...with warm, soapy water!

Mike Blur 9 years, 10 months ago

Amen thx1138. What people fail to realize is that is sanitizer is used too much, then their food will taste like sanitizer. Reference On the Border, Applebees, etc. Gimme food, and nothing but food.

q_ball2kand1 9 years, 10 months ago

Pretty sure that anyone eating at Burrito King ("The Slops" as my circle of friends has called it), knows what they're are getting into. Open late, cheap, and fast unless you go right after 2 a.m. BK serves people usually too drunk to taste what they're eating anyway. At least they cleaned up the tacos, no more grease swimming pools in the aluminum foil.

ronwell_dobbs 9 years, 10 months ago

This isn't news. Had they passed their health inspection it would occupy a red "Breaking" banner on the website.

revshackleford 9 years, 10 months ago

A friend of mine found (i.e. bit into) a Gummy Bear inside his burrito; don't know if that's an actual health violation.

dweezil222 9 years, 10 months ago

Come on, no one goes to BK for gourmet food. It's just like Pizza Shuttle, all you care about is that it's cheap and open when you're so drunk you're about to pass out on a park bench.

fletch 9 years, 10 months ago

And they're still delicious after midnight.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 9 years, 10 months ago

""engaging in other activities that contaminate the hands.""Ewww. It would have been better had they just said "after going number two" rather than just leaving it to our imaginations.I haven't been there in a while. This is making me curious...

beatrice 9 years, 10 months ago

Nice to see some things in Lawrence don't change.

BaxterC 9 years, 10 months ago

I live near BK and occasionally I walk over there to get a drink. This isn't really surprising because last time I was there they were keeping their eggs cooled inside a pepsi machine. But if you want to eat there, I'd go there over the next few days when they are probably going to obey the codes...for now.

auturgy 9 years, 10 months ago

This makes me hungry for a big ol' Burrito King bean and cheese burrito.Duh-licious.

rocksolid 9 years, 10 months ago

I wonder if it was the same guy working there that used to work at Amigos on 23rd street making the "refried beans"?

Mike Blur 9 years, 10 months ago

Confro, don't tell me Jesse sold the place??!!I was such a good customer, Jesse actually gave me a Burrito King T-shirt that I wear only on special occasions.

labmonkey 9 years, 10 months ago

I'm sure that suprises noone. It's not like too many people eat from there when they are sober. I'm sure the oils in jalapenio peppers will kill any germs that might be on the pubic hair in the burrito. Hot sauce will also kill many eat up.

yoornotmee 9 years, 10 months ago

I got really really sick the last two (and final) times I went there . While you're at it, Gumby's on 23rd should get inspected. I worked there for a while and I was shocked at how many simple health codes they violated. It was obvious ones too, like not washing dishes or using gloves. I would often wash the dishes there, and would get yelled at by the manager for using soap and sanitizer. Apparently they wanted me to just rinse everything off so that it just "looked clean". After working there, I'll never eat there again. On the other hand, I work at Five Guys at 31st and Iowa, and they go above and beyond with their cleaning. Every night we have to take all the condiments out and wash and sanitize the condiment holders. EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. We also push all the tables and chairs to one side to clean the floors, and then push them to the other side and clean the other side of the floor. We clean the tiles on the wall every night. Basically, if it's something that can possibly be cleaned, it gets cleaned nightly. There were two training videos, one for food prep, and one for cleaning. The cleaning one was by far the longest of the two videos. They're pretty anal about their cleanliness, but I like it. If you're the first one in the store in the morning, you could totally eat off the floor; it's THAT clean.

Sigmund 9 years, 10 months ago

I ate the once, never again. Say what you will about evil corporate non-local super burritos, Chipolte has them beat hands down and if they were opened till 3AM Burrito King would be flushed down the toilet where they belong.

bearded_gnome 9 years, 10 months ago

say it ain't so, Jose! if memory serves, this ain't the first time the king has been cited. really doesn't make you hungry when you read the details! there's another feeling in the gut ... well ... uh... find the trash can!

weatherguy48 9 years, 10 months ago

When I eat the king, I expect the worst.Afterwards, that is. I hold no blame towards the king for the rapid expulsion of his product out of my starfish.The food is tasty, and I merely live for the moment. Equation add up?

BigPrune 9 years, 10 months ago

I've always wondered what the difference in appearance is between an eyelash, a nose hair, and an eyebrow hair. Too bad the health department couldn't enlighten us on that NEVER go to Burrito King in the early afternoon and order a tamale. You'll be wasting your money. I did it twice to be sure, and they were both gross. In the evening they're okay.

Confrontation 9 years, 10 months ago

The food has been horrible for about the last 6 months. Not that the quality was great to begin with, but it's worse now. Did they switch owners?

penguin 9 years, 10 months ago

I once lived right across the street from BK in the apts on 9th and Illinois. It was very helpful during the evening after a night out. Also sometimes it was just funny to sit outside and watch the people try to order from BK. It was actual the first place I ever ate in Lawrence and its nastiness is classic.

Daytrader23 9 years, 10 months ago

Life is too short to eat at fast food joints. I stopped eating at these places over 7 years ago. The first few years I would get a craving and go to Burger King or taco bell and throw up shortly afterwards. Now I eat at only the finest restaurants and my body is in better condition than when I was 19.Fast food is for fat a$$es.

Mike Blur 9 years, 10 months ago

Well Molls, some people just don't have the constitution for the King. That's not a character flaw, just a fact of life. Too bad you're missing out.

Tanetti 9 years, 10 months ago

An employee failing to wash hands after touching bare human body parts other that clean hands or arms, and after "engaging in other activities that contaminate the hands."***This could be anything, no? Touching the face or nose, rubbing one's eyes, etc. I doubt it was toilet related unless the inspector was in the bathroom with the employee(s) or the employee was sticking his hands down his pants. I vividly remember being a manager at McDonald's while in college and making the guys in the grill mad because I would insist that they wash their hands after they scratched their nose or took off their hats to adjust them, then put them back on. "But my hair is clean!" they would say. As if THAT would matter to the health department. Too bad we couldn't do much about the people who would rest their diapered infant/toddler on the counter where we served food. Yech.

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