Sat. Oct 1st, 2022

The hipster 4th Street Market, an upscale food court in DTSA, recently announced that some of their tenants would be leaving and a few new ones are on the way.



However we took a look today at the recent health inspections, by the OC Environmental Health agency of the eateries at the 4th Street Market and the results are no bueno.

Take for example Wagyu Chuck, a burger joint that is the brainchild of Playground Chef Jason Quinn. The OC Weekly says that their burgers  “that taste a lot like In-N-Outs but with a denser bun.” But take a look at what happened when they were visited by the O.C. Health Agency on November 13, 2015:

  • Improper Sanitizer Concentration/Method
  • Improper Holding Temp of PHF (60F-120F), (50F-59F)
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips
  • Inadequate Hygiene (Hair/Clothing/Eating/Drinking)
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Unapproved Pesticides/Chemicals/Labeling
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving

Wagyu Chuck apparently did not learn from the inspection they had on March 11, 2015:

  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Lack of/ImproperJanitorial Facilities or Liq Waste
  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage

PFC pollo

Sadly Quinn’s other 4th Street Market eatery, PFC, also did not fare well when they were inspected on November 13, 2015:

  • Change Room Improper Use/Lack of
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving

Nor when they were inspected on March 11, 2015:

  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Lack of/Improper Handwashing/Handwashing Sup.

Noodle Tramp

Noodle Tramp racked up these violations when they were inspected on November 13, 2015:

  • Improper Cooling Practices
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing

And they received these violations when they were inspected on March 11, 2015:

  • Improper Cooling Practices
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Lack of/Improper Janitorial Facilities or Liq Waste
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage
  • Change Room Improper Use/Lack of
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings

Mar in Santa Ana

Mar racked up these violations when they were inspected on November 13, 2015:

  • Improper Holding Temperatures of PHF
  • Inadequate Hygiene (Hair/Clothing/Eating/Drinking)
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Change Room Improper Use/Lack of
  • Lack of/Improper Janitorial Facilities or Liq Waste
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing

And these violations when they were inspected on June 4, 2015, after a report of a foodborne illness at their location:

  • Improper Sanitizer Concentration/Method
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Inadequate Hygiene (Hair/Clothing/Eating/Drinking)

And these violations during an inspection on March 11, 2015:

  • Inadequate Hygiene (Hair/Clothing/Eating/Drinking)
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips

Stockyard Sandwich Co.l

The Stockyard Sandwich Company also was issued violations during an inspection on September 14, 2015:

  • Lack of/Improper Handwashing/Handwashing Sup.
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Signs/Labels/Menu Board/Trans Fat-Missing/Incorrect/Lack of Food Handler Card
  • Water Temp (100F-119F)/Wash Temp <100F/Cross Con
  • Inadequate Hygiene (Hair/Clothing/Eating/Drinking)
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing

And they received these violations during an inspection on June 17, 2015 (after a foodborne illness investigation at their location):

  • Improper Cooling Practices
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips
  • Improper Holding Temperatures of PHF
  • Unapproved Pesticides/Chemicals/Labeling
  • Lack of/Improper Handwashing/Handwashing Sup.
  • Inadequate Hygiene (Hair/Clothing/Eating/Drinking)
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving

And these violations after an inspection on March 11, 2015:

  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Lack of/Improper Handwashing/Handwashing Sup.
  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage
  • Unapproved Pesticides/Chemicals/Labeling
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings

Electric City Butcher

Electric City Butcher fared no better during an inspection on November 13, 2015:

  • Failure to Comply w/HACCP or TPHC plan not on-site
  • Improper Holding Temperatures of PHF
  • Last Report Unavailable/Consumer Access
  • Signs/Labels/Menu Board/Trans Fat-Missing/Incorrect/Lack of Food Handler Card
  • Water Temp (100F-119F)/Wash Temp <100F/Cross Con

And they tallied up these charges after an inspection on March 31, 2015:

  • Failure to Comply w/HACCP or TPHC plan not on-site
  • Improper Holding Temperatures of PHF

Dos Chinos

Even the Dos Chinos fared poorly when they were inspected on November 13, 2015:

  • Improper Holding Temp of PHF (60F-120F), (50F-59F)
  • Change Room Improper Use/Lack of
  • Water Temp (100F-119F)/Wash Temp <100F/Cross Con
  • Signs/Labels/Menu Board/Trans Fat-Missing/Incorrect/Lack of Food Handler Card
  • Inoperable/Lack of Food Thermometer
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Last Report Unavailable/Consumer Access
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving

And they received these violations when they were inspected on March 11, 2015:

  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Inoperable/Lack of Food Thermometer
  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage
  • Change Room Improper Use/Lack of
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing

Maybe the Dos Chinos should be called the Dos Cochinos?

KTCHN DTSA

Finally, KTCHN DTSA also racked up a few violations when they were inspected on November 13, 2015:

  • Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Signs/Labels/Menu Board/Trans Fat-Missing/Incorrect/Lack of Food Handler Card
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips

And when they were inspected on March 11, 2015:

  • Improper Holding Temp of PHF (60F-120F), (50F-59F)
  • Uncleanliness of Premises/Trash Storage
  • Inappropriate Sanitizer Level/ Lack of Test Strips
  • Improper Food Storage/Receiving
  • Inoperable/Lack of Food Thermometer
  • Unsanitary Equipment/Utensil/Linen/Plumbing
  • Failure to Comply w/HACCP or TPHC plan not on-site

Is it too much to ask that these hipster eateries comply with Orange County’s food safety laws? If we are going to hold El Festival Nightclub to a higher standard shouldn’t we also hold the 4th Street Market to the same standard?

By Editor

Art Pedroza started Orange County's first political blog, the Orange Juice, back in 2003. He now publishes the top civic blog in Orange County - New Santa Ana, plus other blogs including New Anaheim, New Fullerton and the Irvine News Blog, as well as the OC Politics Blog.

48 thoughts on “DTSA’s 4th Street Market cochino eateries keep racking up health violations”
    1. If you read the post you would know that foodborne illness investigations were carried out at two of the eateries in question. No deaths were reported but chorro is nothing to sneeze at.

      The cleanliness of the eateries is much in doubt given the health code violations that have been issued repeatedly.

  1. You have far worse conditions going on in your own kitchen. Your hate for downtown does not get you anywhere. Sorry.

    1. No I don’t. But there is a key difference. I am not serving the public.

      I don’t hate the downtown. What I dislike is overpriced restaurants that for whatever reason cannot abide by our food safety laws.

  2. Thank you for your keen observations from Dos Cochinos here. It should be noted that these were minor infractions that didn’t even warrant any closures. For instance, our salsa verde dispenser is not filled with a preservative ladened canned product and we cannot leave it outside for more than 2 hours but at the time of inspection they did not note that the self serve house salsa verde is not left out for over 2 hours becuase it is always being used up by customers and refilled. We also used a clean kitchen apron to cover our fermenting habanero for our sriracha instead of dry kitchen towels because dry kitchen towels are chalk full of lint, but the department insisted that we use the dry kitchen towel instead amd marked it up as “improper changing room” thing. Also in the middle or just after service or even during early prepping food will end up on the ground and gets cleaned up almost immediately, but things that are behind the equipment get cleaned at the end of the day, but if the department sees even anything they have to write it up as policy. We are very adamant about following every strict OC Health guideline. I’m sorry you hate our “high prices” and “hipster” food, but it is what pays the bills for our families and all of the families that work with us and to the communities that we give back to. It is very difficult to do business and provide jobs in California and the media in general understand this and are very helpful especially when we are up against insurmountable odds and compete against giant conglomerates, but thank you anyways. You really are of great service to your community batman.

    1. Thanks for your response. The violations issued on Nov. 13 included a major violation for improper holding temperature which as you know can foster microbial growth. http://foodinspections.ocgov.com/foodinspections/inspectionArchives/DA5242766.pdf.

      While the other violations were minor they included “Lack of/Unsanitary/Condition Walls/Floors/Ceilings” both on Nov. 13 and after the inspection on March 11. Both reports also noted “Change Room Improper Use/Lack of” and “Improper Food Storage/Receiving.”

      Anyone can screw up once but when you see an enterprise screw up twice it is a cause for concern.

      I don’t know why the other media give food safety a pass. When I am not blogging I work in safety/risk control so I am perhaps more aware of these issues than the average reporter or blogger. I also started a disease disinfection unit when I worked in restoration. So I know a bit about bio-hazards.

      I have nothing against you folks but if you are going to charge a premium, which is pretty much the case for the eateries at the 4th Street Market, my minimum expectation is that the environment will be clean and the eateries will comply with the Orange County food safety laws. I don’t think that is too much to ask.

        1. Again the point here is that they are charging more because they are SUPPOSED to be better. My expectation is that if you are going to call yourself premium then you should have a spotless health record too.

    1. I don’t eat out much. I am a very good cook. One of my kids is vegetarian to top it all off so I end up having to cook more than one meal at times. Luckily I have trained my middle son to cook. He is marinating chicken tonight that will be prepared in a clay oven. My veggie son is having steamed cauliflower dipped in egg batter that will be fried in olive oil and seasoned with Indian spices.

      I do look up health records when I visit other restaurants and we generally avoid the really bad ones. My issue with the 4th Street Market is that these guys are supposed to be serious chefs. Well food safety is something that serious chefs are supposed to be responsible for. I am disappointed that these eateries don’t seem to understand that. You would hope to see progress but when they keep getting new violations on subsequent inspections it tells you that the message simply is not being received.

      1. You don’t eat out “much.” Yet you still do. How many minor/ major violations do you believe make a “really bad restaurant? For the sake of fair and objective journalism, I challenge you to disclose your favorite restaurant’s inspections and see how closely they stack up.

        1. Again the point I have made here, repeatedly, is that I am holding the 4th Street Market eateries to a higher standard because they market themselves as being better. If they are better, and are going to charge a premium price, my expectation is that they should be complying with the Orange County food safety laws. When you see these eateries being issued violations every time they are visited by health inspectors – including repeat violations, it is beyond dismaying.

          Why would you want to pay more for food prepared in such eateries? You may as well go to Norm’s and pay less.

          1. Yeah, I figured you wouldn’t do it. I hold all restaurants to the same standards regardless of price. If safety was really your goal, I think you would agree with me. Having worked in the industry for over 10 years, I have worked at every type of place imaginable. I have worked at large corporate restaurants that have corporate safety teams that still manage to get major infractions and small mom and pop’s that did much better. A burrito from Chipotle might be rather inexpensive but I don’t think that justified the E. Coli outbreak.

          2. Actually I am glad you mentioned Chipotle. Their stock has dipped in value by 35% since their chorro outbreak started. That should be a lesson to the 4th Street Market eateries. When you consider the health violations they have racked up and the two foodborne illness investigations at their facility it is clearly a matter of time before they get involved in a large scale public safety disaster. They really need to clean up their act. Hopefully the attention we have paid to this matter will spur them to, like Chipotle, finally get serious about food safety.

      2. LOL – “My issue with the 4th Street Market is that these guys are supposed to be serious chefs” – Where did you ever see THAT? They’re mostly food trucks that have taken those spaces. Please show me where they’re supposed to be serious chefs? (my sides are aching from laughing so hard!)

          1. Jason is not the man behind 4th St Mkt. Some other guy owns the building. Ryan something. I know Jason has some food stalls but he doesn’t own or manage the market.

  3. Well I am a patron of the 4th Street Market and many other businesses in DTSA. Minor health infractions don’t scare me. What does scare me is biased and unbalanced journalism. I’ll just take everything you say with a grain of salt like I do with Fox News.

    1. All I did was present the public health records – unedited. This is info that the public has access to but rarely bothers to look at.

      Rather than attack me you should be holding these eateries accountable for their dreadful health records.

      1. That was an attack on the way you do your job, just like you are attacking the way the small business owners do their job. If I were to attack you, I would say something like “you are an idiot” or something to that effect. There is a difference.

        You didn’t just present it, you criticized it just as I am criticizing your lack of holding ALL businesses accountable and “cherry picking” those you find to be not of your liking.

      2. I think miserable is overstating it. Were there violations? Yes. Should people stop eating there because of them? No.

        I do expect you to treat ALL businesses the same. I appreciate investigative reporting when it is done correctly.
        Of course they are considered infractions for a reason. I think maybe you should speak to the OC Environmental Health Agency and see what their EXPERT opinions are on these infractions. Do your research. Copying and pasting a couple lines from a report doesn’t make you a journalist.

          1. I actually don’t mind your reporting. If everyone’s opinion were the same then I’d only need to go to one source for information.

            But me personally; I’ve never heard of (and I may be wrong) 4th Street Market touting itself as “Premium” dining option. At the end of the day — it’s a Food Court that sells burgers, fried chicken & burritos. To me; 4th Street is a brick and mortar stepping stone for food trucks to try their wares in a brick & mortar environment.

            By word of mouth I’ve heard the figures of what each business pays to have a shop at that location, and if the number I heard was/is true. I doubt very much any of the owners are pocketing hand over fist profits. =/

          2. Just look at their own statements and their overblown press coverage:

            The 4th Street Market may be the most exciting development project in Santa Ana in a generation. The Market is a stunning mix of store where local artisans can sell their products, a demonstration kitchen for culinary programming, classes, community events and local chef demonstrations, eight quick- service food stands, an artisan coffee lab, beer, wine and cocktails, and seating for approximately 200 diners scattered throughout the market and in the open air garden in the beer garden behind the building. http://www.lunchboxdtsa.com/aboutus/

            “4th Street Market is probably the biggest game changer to hit downtown in a long time,” building owner Ryan Chase said of his East End project. http://www.ocregister.com/articles/food-650513-quinn-street.html

            Officially opened this Monday, 4th Street Market is aiming to bring a little bit of that Grand Central Market magic down to Orange County. Founded by Santa Ana developer Ryan Chase, this food emporium will surely challenge the likes of Costa Mesa’s OC Mix and possibly even Anaheim’s Packing House. http://la.eater.com/2015/2/17/8055463/4th-street-market-santa-ana-opening-photos-gallery-jason-quinn#4671660

            Downtown L.A. has Grand Central Market, San Francisco has the Ferry Building, and now, Santa Ana has 4th Street Market. http://www.latimes.com/food/dailydish/la-dd-fourth-street-market-santa-ana-20150220-story.html

            A food hall to end all food halls, Santa Ana’s new 4th Street Market opened last week. – See more at: http://www.lamag.com/digestblog/santa-anas-4th-street-market-cooks-next-generation/#sthash.1j0V9ntz.dpuf

            4th Street Market sets a new standard for the multi-concept, artisanal food complex. http://dancoxpr.com/4th-street-market-to-debut-in-downtown-santa-ana-ca-2

            My sources tell me they are really hurting.

          3. It’s becoming obvious that you have some sort of agenda when it comes to 4th Street Market. Why all the hate? Posting the health code violations was one thing, but now with you posting quotes and saying “My sources tell me they are really hurting”, you’re bordering on obsessed with taking this place down.

          4. I really don’t care what happens to them. But my source is a City Commissioner and he knows what is up in DTSA. The gentrifiers are imploding.

          5. Okay, I read their website too and when I parsed through their press release, I didn’t find anything about “high class” and/or “better”. It’s *press release* though, so it’s not like they’re going to break themselves down. Again…..it’s burgers, fried chicken and burritos we’re talking about here.

            I feel you may have a problem with them calling themselves “Artisan”. I don’t know what that means to you, but to me, it means: They server their food with an “Aioli chutney” not Heinz Ketchup

            These are just kids trying to make a dime doing what they love. For that, I applaud them. I don’t know any of the owners personally, but I don’t believe there’s an heinous intentions behind any of their infractions.

            I’ve eaten at some pretty shady spots in DTSA. Have a gotten sick? A handful of times. Will I stop eating in DTSA? No. At the end of the day; it’s a crap shoot.

            Perfection is often sought after, but seldom attained. I think you’ll find the same about all businesses, not just one’s in DTSA owned by “gentrifiers”

          6. Here’s the deal. We wrote about their violations once before. And they didn’t learn from that. The response they SHOULD be offering is “sorry, we will try to do better.” That is not what is happening. Jason Quinn in particular has made it clear he doesn’t care how anyone feels about his offerings.

            They can call themselves whatever they want to. But at the end of the day they either need to find a way to comply with the O.C. Food Safety laws or prepare themselves for more of these articles down the road.

          7. Okay. i agree with that. If any business chooses not to comply with safety regulations there should be consequences. And those consequences were/are public disclosure of inspection results as well as the possibility of fines and/or closures. <– Personally i don't get why anyone/business tries to get away with anything that can be posted online for all to see. Which brings up the possibility; they're not trying to get away with anything.

            You tossed in Festival Hall as point of comparison, but I don't think anyone here will disagree that that's not an Apples to Apples comparison.

            From your own words:
            http://newsantaana.com/2016/01/03/why-was-a-16-year-old-allowed-to-party-at-the-dreadful-el-festival-hall-nightclub/

            And while I agree that paying $$$ for Fried Chicken is a nuisance. I'm not going to throw the baby out with the bathwater, or do the job of a full-time salaried inspector/ city-employee. =)

            How you report is up to you. But how the people spend their money, that's up to the consumer. Taking into account: You mainly cook your own meals; you've removed yourself from the latter.

          8. This post has clearly had an impact on our readers. It has been viewed here over 3,400 times and the Facebook entry has had 14,274 views.

            If you are going to ask folks to pay a premium the least you can do is comply with the Orange County food safety laws.

          9. Again, I agree with that.

            But you must also give them time to correct their infractions.

          10. Most of them were inspected in March and months later still had problems when they were inspected again in November. They had ample time to get their act together.

          11. Then they will be shut down by the County Health Inspector, not by a blog.

            At the end of the day — people are going to eat no matter what. But the consumer/people will make up their minds by themselves. The thing with 4th Street Market is; they’re modular stalls that are interchangeable with the market, so if one of them goes out of business, for whatever reason, another business will pop up in it’s place.

          12. That was a rhetorical statement and from the point of “the grand scheme of things”.

            I was a customer of the Swap-meet that was at that place (before it turned into 4th Street Market) and when the mood strikes me, I’m a customer of 4th street Market now.

            i feel it important to throw out — I’m not here for pointless repartee or talk negatively about your reporting style. I’m here because DTSA interests me and I’m assuming you maintain this message board for conversation RE: all aspects of DTSA.

          13. I don’t recall the swap meet. And I too have visited the 4th Street Market once. It is OK but I can cook most of what they have to offer. Plus we Mexicans have been scrambling eggs into leftovers for years so that is nothing new.

            The basic problem with the gentrification model is that these businesses are largely appealing to folks who don’t live here. It seems nuts to ignore the families that make up most of Santa Ana.

            What we really need in DTSA is more family friendly restaurants. A Spaghetti Factory would do quite well.

  4. Anytime you eat something not prepared by you there is a risk. Yes, a restaurant should be more cautious and better prepared but on the real, every single eatery every has healthcode violations of some degree 100% of the time. So instead of writing an obvious slam piece try some creative critisism to better their establishments. Some of us that live here in Santana enjoy them.

    1. Again our issue is that the 4th Street Market is supposed to be gourmet and they charge a premium. The least they can do is comply with the Orange County food safety laws.

  5. Have you seen the new stalls there yet? ALL ARE AWFUL! That pork place is so sad (Pig Pen Delicacy). The pizza place is nasty (soggy, tasteless pizza) , and the Terra place has changed the menu about 5 times already. Of all of the fantastic food out there, and food trucks looking for brick and mortar space, THIS is what the Ryan Chase chose? It’s an abomination. I wish you’d do an article on this. We need your opinion!!

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