If An NYC Restaurant Isn’t Showing Its Health Inspection Grade, It Probably Failed

NYC restaurants are supposed to post letter grades in a conspicuous spot near the entrance.

NYC restaurants are supposed to post letter grades in a conspicuous spot near the entrance.

Three years ago, New York City began requiring that all of its 24,000+ restaurants post huge letter grades representing their most recent health inspection results, but more than 1,000 eateries that didn’t make the desired A grade are balking at going public with their report card.

The NY Daily News reports that 1,356 restaurants have been fined by the city for failure to properly post their grades. That’s an increase of more than 500 restaurants since 2011.

Not surprisingly, almost all of the places caught hiding their grades failed to make an “A.” 55% of those fined for failing to post grades received a “C,” which is the lowest possible score, and 43% received a “B” from the city. For some reason, 30 restaurants with “A” grades were fined for not posting the inspection results.

Restaurants that fail to post their grades face fines of $1,000, but some owners say the fine is nothing compared to the business they would lose if they posted their subpar grades in the window.

“I’d rather take the fine than place (the C) up there. It would have ruined my business,” says the manager of a Brooklyn restaurant I will never patronize again. “I know a lot of other restaurants do that because it’s not worth it.”

The city isn’t exactly thrilled with businesses that would rather hide a sign than keep a clean kitchen.

“Restaurants with C grades may try to get away with not posting the card, but should instead focus on improving food safety practices,” a rep for the Health Department tells the Daily News.

If you’re in NYC and don’t see a letter grade at the restaurant you’re thinking of eating at, you can always find the grade on the city’s website, or with this app for iPhone and iPad.