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Philippe's restaurant closed because of cockroach infestation

February 11, 2010 |  7:23 pm
Philippe Philippe the Original, a venerable Los Angeles eatery famous for its juicy French dip sandwiches, has been shut down by county health inspectors because of a cockroach infestation, officials said Thursday evening.

Health inspectors discovered the problem about 11 a.m. Wednesday after conducting an inspection prompted by citizens’ complaints, said Angelo Bellomo, director of environmental health for the Los Angeles County Public Health Department.

He said the restaurant typically receives high scores during routine inspections. County inspectors conducted such an inspection Wednesday, in addition to the probe based on the complaint, and the business scored in the low 90s, Bellomo said.

But inspectors had to close the restaurant for 48 hours to allow the vermin to be removed.

"When you have a violation like a live cockroach infestation, it doesn't matter how good the score is," Bellomo said.

He said health inspectors plan to return Friday morning and the restaurant could be open by noon.

A worker at the restaurant Thursday evening said that the management was not available for comment.

Known simply as Philippe's, the restaurant has been operating for more than 100 years. The business has been at its current location on North Alameda Street near Union Station since 1951, according to its website.

-- Robert J. Lopez

2008 file photo by Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times