President eats at shop with health violation history

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) - The White House did not immediately comment on whether it was aware of WUSA9 reports of recent violations and a prior health closure order at the DuPont Circle Shake Shack where President Obama and Vice President Biden dined Friday.

Click here to see Shake Shack's inspection history:

The President praised the popular burger and milkshake shop.

"Shake Shack, which has great burgers, and pays its employees over ten bucks and hour, so we're very proud of them and the great work that they're doing," Obama said at a stop drawing attention to a redevelopment project in NoMa, the neighborhood North of Massachusetts Avenue. "Enjoy your burgers, if you guys can buy them," the President told the press corps.

To check restaurant's on your smartphone before you dine, text the word FOOD to 25543. We'll send you a link to the WUSA9 Restaurant Alert Database.

For about an hour Friday, the two most powerful men in the world shut down DuPont Circle for a sit-down at the same Shake Shack we featured in 2012 in Restaurant Alert citing operating without running water.

More recently, May 2, 2014, a complaint sent inspectors to Shake Shack at 1216 18th St. NW for an inspection that identified seven violations according to health department records.

Six of the seven violations were not corrected according to DC Department of Health.

A Shake Shack spokesman said the recent violations have since been resolved and attributed the 2012 closure to a water main break.

He said when inspectors cited the restaurant, it was not open for business, but handing out complimentary frozen custards on the sidewalk.

In the inspection two weeks ago, officials cited mold on beer lines and inside a walk-in refrigerator, "potentially hazardous food" stored at temperatures out of the zone "safe" for controlling bacterial growth, and faulty plumbing among seven violations at Shake Shack.

The President was at Shake Shack drawing attention to the completion of a $9 million dollar redevelopment project as an example of good federal spending to increase employment and ease traffic congestion.

The White House also did not respond to questions about routine vetting of restaurants prior to Presidential visits or whether Mr. Obama or someone on staff was familiar with the WUSA9 Restaurant Alert App which lists inspection histories for restaurants in Virginia, DC, and Montgomery Co., Md.

The Shake Shack spokesman said all Shake Shake locations in cities that assign letter grades have received A ratings.


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