Nine Waltham Forest restaurants receive minimum food hygiene rating

Six establishments in Walthamstow and three in Leyton were handed a zero-out-of-five rating by the Food Standards Agency in November

Credit: navorolphotography via Canva

A total of nine restaurants, pubs, or takeaways in the borough were handed a zero-out-of-five food hygiene rating last month.

The eateries affected include three alone on Wood Street in Walthamstow, and a further three on High Road Leyton.

Artist’s Lounge, at 66 Wood Street, was hit with the minimum score on 15th November. According to the Food Standards Agency’s (FSA) website, the cafe and shisha lounge needs major improvement in cleanliness and condition of facilities, and urgent improvement in management of food safety.

Artist’s Lounge advertises itself on Google as a shisha lounge that serves specialty coffees and teas. It opened in December 2022. In March, the Echo reported on how neighbours living in the flats above had resorted to throwing fruit on the venue’s garden roof in an attempt to stop loud music that went on late at night.

Mini Hiba, another Wood Street establishment, received the minimum rating on 2nd November. The FSA ordered the takeaway, which serves traditional Palestinian and Lebanese food, to make urgent improvements to its hygienic food handling and management of food safety.

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Meanwhile, Smash Street Kitchen & Drink Bar, on 2 Golden Parade, Wood Street, was found to require urgent improvement to management of food safety during an inspection on 2nd November.

Three further Walthamstow restaurants and cafes, Deja Brew, at 8 Forest Road, Khushboo at 192 Higham Hill Road, and Little Lotus at 45 Selborne Walk, were found lacking in inspections and handed zero-out-of-five hygiene ratings in November.

In Leyton, newly refurbished gastropub The Coach & Horses was slapped with the minimum rating during an inspection on 7th November. While its hygienic food handling was deemed to be “generally satisfactory”, it was found to be needing major improvement in cleanliness of its facilities and urgent improvement was needed in the management of food safety standards.

Sri Lankan streetfood traders KAMU who have a residency at The Coach & Horses were also handed a zero-out-of-five rating, with inspectors declaring a need for “major improvement” in both hygienic food handling and cleanliness and condition of facilities. Urgent improvement was necessary in regards to KAMU’s management of food safety.

Lastly, Atalian Servest Food Company in Leyton Bus Garage was handed the minimum rating during an inspection on 8th November. Improvement was needed in all three assessed areas: hygienic food handling, cleanliness and condition of facilities, and management of food safety.

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