31 February 2014
Five Star Take Five
Take Five Scores Five Stars

The owners, staff and customers of the Take Five Café in the Port Arcades Shopping Centre are celebrating this week after scoring a maximum of five stars by the Food Standards Agency.

The property was inspected on Friday 17th January, with a thorough examination of the dining area, the storage cupboards, all of the kitchen and preparation areas, and each fridge and freezer. The systems of food labelling and procedures for logging when foods have been opened, and the timing processes for when consumables must be used by were also checked.

Owner of Take 5, Lisa Sims explained, “We record everything from the temperature of the foods when they are cooked, to being kept in a heated cabinet, and we check and record the temperature every hour. All cleaning is recorded, the inspectors noticed this and commended us! Since the opening of the cafe we have also employed pest control contractors who inspect the premises every month and this is also recorded.”

Lisa continued, “When we took over the lease we discovered the cafe had previously been awarded two stars for its food hygiene so we knew we had a bit of work to do to improve the situation dramatically and it did take us quite a long time to put things right before I had the confidence to open the cafe with a clean kitchen and eating area.”

It seems that Lisa is quite accustomed to five star awards, one of the Inspectors recognised her and remembered giving her five stars when she was responsible for a college kitchen in Northwich. It doesn’t end there either as Lisa, and her partner Allen Jones, previously owned an American themed dinner in Altrincham which they quickly took from a three to a five star hygiene rated property. Lisa said, “I feel extremely proud that I have run three different kitchens in four years and I have got all of them to five stars. I feel so strongly that if you are preparing food for the public that you shouldn't cut any corners on food hygiene.”

Lisa added, “All of the team employed at Take 5 are thoroughly trained including the use of the hand washing system we use, they cannot touch any item of food with their hands, we have allocated utensils for all foods. We also use the best sanitiser for the tables and work surfaces and we have a hand sanitiser for the customers use similar to the ones used in hospitals and doctor’s surgeries, the inspectors noticed all of these procedures. We are also very proud of our clean toilet and baby changing facilities that are cleaned and inspected throughout the day.”

Each business is given a ‘hygiene rating’ when it is inspected by a food safety officer from the business’s local authority, on behalf of the FSA. The hygiene rating shows how closely the business is meeting the requirements of food hygiene law. At the end of the inspection, the business is given one of the six ratings. The top rating of ‘5’ means that the business was found to have ‘very good’ hygiene standards.

Take 5 is open seven days a week in the Port Arcades Shopping Centre, serving a wide selection of food and drinks, including many healthy options.