Gonzalez Mexican Restaurant

38971 Highway 299, Willow Creek

Routine Inspection
02. Food safety certification, food handler card compliance

Conditions Observed: Food handler cards were not available for any of the employees working at the time of the inspection. Food handler cards must be obtained for all individuals that prepare, store, or serve food in a food facility within 30 days from the date of hire. Please ensure that all employees at this facility obtain valid food handler cards and that these are available at the facility during the next routine inspection.


“Food facilities that prepare, handle, or serve non-prepackaged potentially hazardous food, shall have an owner or employee who has passed an aproved food safety certification examination. Food handlers that prepare, handle, or serve non-prepackaged potentially hazardous food, shall obtain a valid Food Handler Card within 30 days after date of hire. (113947.1-113947.5, 113948)”

08. Proper hot and cold holding temperatures.

Conditions Observed: Salsa on the bottom shelf of the large glass-front reach-in beverage cooler in the front bar area was measured at 42.6 ° F. Ambient temperature according to the in-unit thermometer was ~55° F. Corrected on site; salsa was moved to a different refrigeration unit; thank you. It was noted that this cooler is used primarily for non-potentially-hazardous beverages (bottled beer, etc.). Please either discontinue use of this unit for cold holding of potentially-hazardous foods such as salsa, or adjust/service/repair this unit so that it is capable of holding potentially-hazardous foods at or below 41° F.


“Except during preparation, cooking, cooling, transportation to or from a retail food facility for a period of less than thirty minutes, when time is used as the public health control, or as otherwise specified, potentially hazardous foods shall be maintained at or below 41F or at or above 135F. The following foods may be held at or below 45F: raw shell eggs, unshucked live molluscan shellfish, pasteurized milk and pasteurized milk products in original sealed containers, potentially hazardous foods held during transportation. Potentially hazardous foods held for dispensing in serving lines and salad bars may be held at 45F, not to exceed 12 hours in a 24 hour period, if unused portions are discarded. Food preparation shall not exceed two cumulative hours without a return to the required holding temperatures. (113996, 113998, 114037, 114343(a))”

10. Proper cooling methods.

Conditions Observed: Refried beans in a large plastic bucket in the walk-in cooler were measured at 40.4 ° F on the edges and 42.4 ° F in the center. Since other foods in the walk-in were measured below 41° F, discussed when the beans were prepared and the cooling processes used. Beans were prepared the night before, and staff explained and demonstrated the use of ice paddles for cooling. Discussed using ice paddles for further cooling of this batch of beans, and discussed optimal cooling processes for large batches of beans or other foods in the future (in addition to ice paddles), to include separating into smaller metal containers, use of ice baths, and monitoring temperatures throughout the cooling process to ensure thorough cooling prior to transfer into plastic containers. Provided cooling logs and recommended use until consistent cooling can be assured. Please ensure that all potentially-hazardous foods are cooled within the required timeframes to minimize time in the “danger zone” and prevent the growth of hazardous microorganisms (cool foods from 135° F to 70° F within no more than 2 hours, and from 70° F to 41° F within another 4 hours, for a maximum cooling time not to exceed 6 hours).


“After heating, potentially hazardous foods shall be rapidly cooled from 135F to 70F within 2 hours, and then from 70F to 41F within 4 hours. Potentially hazardous foods prepared from ambient temperature ingredients must be cooled to below 41F within 4 hours. Cooling shall be facilitated by one or more of the following methods: in shallow pans, separating food into smaller portions, adding ice as an ingredient, using an ice bath and stirring frequently, using an ice paddle, using rapid cooling equipment, or using containers that facilitate heat transfer. (114002, 114002.1)”

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