Red Bang Bang Chinese at 103 West Maxwell was closed Tuesday by the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department.
Luke Mathis, an environmental health supervisor, said Wednesday that the health department received a complaint of a rodent found in a customer’s food earlier this week, prompting an inspection.
“Yesterday, one of inspectors did see evidence of mice in the establishment, and at that time we decided it was appropriate to close (the restaurant) pending remedial actions,” Mathis said. He said that the department met with the restaurant owner Wednesday morning and that he anticipates that there will be a reinspection Monday. If the inspection finds no problems, Red Bang Bang might be able to reopen, he said.
“They’ve worked extensively with pest control, and it sounds as though they’ve conducted a deep cleaning,” Mathis said.
Complaints are not made public until a case is closed, he said, and the identity of the person who filed the complaint is not released.
A Michigan woman named Christina Beal posted a photo Tuesday on Facebook of what she said was food served to her nephew with a rat in it. Beal did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Red Bang Bang responded on Facebook, with owner and manager Cai Dong saying the claim was “very hard to believe” and alleging that the customer asked for $25,000. Dong said the allegations are false and that the restaurant had contacted the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department for “an immediate inspection.” Dong did not respond Wednesday to requests for comment, and no one answered the phone at the restaurant.
In its last regular inspection in late April, Red Bang Bang passed with a score of 99 out of 100. The only violation was related to wiping cloths.
“At that time, they were in compliance,” Mathis said. He said it isn’t unusual for restaurants to go from clean to having mice in a month.
Mathis said he has seen the photo of the rodent in the meal, but “we have no way of saying whether that was real or not. From our end, we had received a complaint of mice contaminating food, and the inspection verified evidence of rodent activity. I don’t know whether that was real or not.”