Pricey NYC eatery falls short on health inspection

NEW YORK — Its $310 tasting menu makes Per Se one of New York City’s most expensive restaurants, but its “C” grade from health inspectors puts it near the bottom of the heap when it comes to sanitary violations.

Per Se got 42 violation points when it was inspected Feb. 19, city health department records showed. Infractions included failure to hold hot food at 140 degrees and a lack of a hand-washing facility near the food preparation area.

Per Se representatives did not immediately return a call seeking comment, but the restaurant will have a chance to argue its case at a hearing. Until then it must post a sign saying its grade is pending.

The 10-year-old Per Se is the East Coast outlet of Thomas Keller’s French Laundry in Yountville, Calif.

Per Se is one of only seven New York City restaurants to earn three Michelin stars, and The New York Times called it the city’s best restaurant in 2011.

The chef’s tasting menu for Sunday included Hudson Valley duck foie gras and Nova Scotia lobster a la Bordelaise. There was a $100 surcharge for Wagyu beef.

New York City health officials began issuing letter grades to restaurants in 2011, and about 87 percent of city restaurants have “A” grades, a Health Department spokesman said.

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