Logan Square Kitchen to City: We're Fed Up!
By Anthony Todd in Food on Aug 23, 2011 1:30PM
Our hats are off to the owners of Logan Square Kitchen. We've watched them fight, successfully, for more than a year to keep their business open amidst the city's regulatory mess. Everything seemed to be settled, but it appears now that while the city may sort of know how to categorize them, the health department might not like them very much. According to a blog post on their site, the establishment has been inspected 19 times in 2 years. The law required two per year.
It gets worse - they finally got cited for their first violation a few weeks ago. If you read the account on their site, it wasn't a particularly pleasant experience. No restaurant enjoys inspection, but if this was the first time in 19 inspections that the Health Department found a minor problem, you think they'd be more receptive to some changes. Owner Zina Murray also wonders (correctly) what isn't getting inspected by the under-staffed department while they inspect a shared bakery 19 times.
LSK is counting on the new mayor, and a new set of appeals to the city. They intend to challenge their citation at an administrative hearing on Thursday, and would like your support. Instructions are on the site, as are the details of the complaint, but you can either attend the hearing or email the city. While we're deeply concerned about food safety, we also know that LSK is doing some of the best work on behalf of independent food producers, sustainability and community in the entire city. At a time when Chicago is desperate for economic growth, the city should use them as a model.