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LES Farm-to-Table Favorite Black Tree Shut Down by DOH for Mice Infestation [UPDATE]

The owner is appealing the inspection, and hopes to reopen later today.

Paul Crispin Quitoriano

It looks like LES farm-to-table favorite Black Tree has a serious mouse problem. The restaurant was shuttered late this week after it failed its June 10 Department of Health inspection, reports DNAinfo. The tiny sandwich spot turned full-blown restaurant racked up 67 violation points for evidence of live vermin and "inadequate" personal cleanliness. A worker was found not wearing a hair net and wearing a piece of clothing with a "possible contaminant" on it. Other violations include food kept at improper temperatures and a staffer touching food instead of using a utensil. But, the main problem seems to be mice, according to the DOH: "Black Tree was closed due to a public health hazard that could not be corrected at the time of the inspection. In this case, they had a severe pest infestation."

Co-owner and chef Sandy Dee Hall plans to appeal the inspection, claiming that the mice are only in the basement and in an area that the restaurant doesn't use and isn't responsible for. This morning, a sign hung outside saying "Closed for repair. Sorry for any inconvenience." The team hopes to reopen later today, but they'll need DOH sign-off for that. No one answered when Eater called the restaurant.

Earlier this year, the team scored a liquor license for a Williamsburg location, so that will be keeping them busy as well.

Update: An exterminator has visited the restaurant three times in the last 24 hours and a cleaning team gave the restaurant a good scrub, so the DOH gave its sign off and the team will reopen tonight, reports The Lo-Down.

Black Tree

131 Orchard St, New York, NY 10002 (212) 533-4684 Visit Website