HIDALGO COUNTY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The Food Patrol visited a meat market in Donna that was once shut down by the county for a lengthy list of violations.
We wanted to see if things have been cleaned up — but did not get the chance.
Also, a McAllen tortilleria is good at making more than just tortillas.
Here’s what’s que rico and what’s que asco on this week’s Food 4 Thought!
Tortilleria Aries has a very familiar logo in the Rio Grande Valley and we’re told the tortillas here never fall flat.
We went to its shop on South Jackson Road in McAllen.
The establishment has been around for over 10 years with five locations across the Valley. The McAllen location scored well on its Oct. 18 City of McAllen health inspection report.
In fact, the tortilleria had nothing out of compliance – a zero. A clean, quality business.
Tortilleria Aries manufactures corn tortillas that are warm when you get them.
The shop also offers other items from avocadoes to salsas to cheese and more. What you get depends on when you’re there.
“During the week, we serve food and on the weekends we serve barbacoa, carnitas, menudo, stuff like that,” explained Samantha Elizondo, a Tortilleria Aries worker.
She added says the secret to the success of these tortillas is that they’re natural and its product is not just found at its shops.
“We also distribute to other stores, like convenience stores,” Elizondo said.
One of the store’s workers says he packages hundreds of tortillas a day.
We asked Jorge Salinas, a Tortilleria Aries worker, how he resists the temptation to start eating them on the job.
“I guess you get used to them,” he responded.
That’s que rico!
Now it’s que asco time!
The Food Patrol headed to Pop’s Meat Market and Drive-Thru on South Victoria Road in Donna.
An inspection report showed 43 items out of compliance.
That list included blood on the walls and on shelves in the coolers, food not stored six inches above the floor, and hands not being washed properly – among other violations.
The county ceased operations for the establishment on October 23 – until further inspections.
The owner was not available when we stopped by.
One of the workers at the drive-thru spoke with us and said we could not inspect the establishment at that time.
“Now do you think the county caught you on a bad day or the county was unfair in some way?” the Food Patrol asked.
“Could be,” answered Hector Hinojosa of Pop’s Meat Market & Drive-Thru.
“But for now, you don’t want us to get video or anything?” we asked.
“Not at the moment,” Hinojosa replied.
He assured us the corrective actions have been taken — or they are getting to them.
We’re really working on them still,” Hinojosa responded.
They are waiting for the county to come, re-inspect, and re-open their doors.
“But you want to get a better inspection report?” we inquired.
“Of course,” Hinojosa said.
You’re part of the Food Patrol! When you see dirty habits, please send us photos/videos and a copy of the complaint you filed to your local health department to News@KVEO.COM