Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai passes inspection

KAILUA-KONA — Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai was inspected by the state Department of Health and received a green “pass” placard Friday.

The Keauhou restaurant was fined $13,000 Thursday for intentionally removing a posted yellow “conditional pass” placard from the facility and re-posting a previous green “pass” placard, and noncompliance with food safety requirements during routine and follow-up inspections since the start of the new year.

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Anna Koethe, a spokesperson with the state Department of Health (DOH), confirmed Friday that DOH inspectors found the Keauhou Shopping Center-based restaurant in compliance with food safety requirements during a re-inspection that day.

“After today’s follow-up inspection conducted by DOH, there were no critical outstanding violations observed and a green placard was posted at Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai restaurant,” she said. “All critical violations observed in previous inspections had been addressed.

“The remaining issue is an ongoing response to a rodent intrusion, which is a non-critical violation. Regardless, the restaurant is currently working with a licensed pest control operator to address the issue.”

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Jeff Daley, Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai director of operations, said the business appreciates its relationship with the DOH and worked very hard to correct the violations. The company said Thursday it would pay the fine and not request a hearing to contest it.

“We are happy to move forward with the green card pass,” he said. “Our ultimate goal is to make sure we have the safest environment for our guests. And everyone here on Team Sam Choy’s is in agreement and worked hard to get that done.”