Among Cal State University schools, Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Sacramento both have similar campus dining services, but they are regulated differently.
Located on the CSUF campus near student housing, the Gastronome is a buffet-style restaurant with a variety of food on its menu. Every student living on campus is required to buy a meal plan.
Cal State Sacramento has their own version of the Gastronome, called the Epicure. It features the same setup of buffet-style and cooked-to-order food stations and opened in September 2012.
Like CSUF, Cal State Sacramento requires their residents to purchase a meal plan, according to the Residence Hall and Dining Commons License Agreement.
The Gastronome, managed by Aramark, is inspected by CSUF. Cal State Fullerton inspects itself based on a set of rules approved by Orange County.
The Epicure, on the other hand, is managed by University Enterprises Dining Services. It is inspected by Sacramento County’s Environmental Specialists from the Environmental Management Department, said Nicole Johnson, administration and compliance manager for University Enterprises Dining Services at Cal State Sacramento.
In an inspection of the Epicure on April 30, there was a major temperature violation found in the deep fried tomatoes and dish wash machine
The inspection report cited due to multiple major violations a yellow placard has been issued, in addition to a $213 re-inspection fee.
After that violation was discovered, the Epicure was given a yellow placard, which means it was given a “conditional pass.” A conditional inspection pass means that they must correct the cited violations before their reinspection date.
Sacramento County uses the placard system in place of a ‘pass or fail’ that Orange County uses. The colors system is green (passing), yellow (conditional pass) and red (failing). The placards are displayed just like the letter system used in Los Angeles County and Riverside County.
The Epicure’s reinspection was conducted the next day, on May 1. They had corrected the temperature violation, and they received a green placard.
Johnson confirmed the $213 reinspection fee was collected for the Epicure tomatoes and dish wash temperature violation.
In comparison with CSUF’s Gastronome, during an inspection conducted in March, the Gastronome was cited for a temperature violation in sausage. The correct holding temperature for sausage should be at 140 degrees fahrenheit, but sausage that inspectors examined was found to be only 66 degrees.
This falls within the “danger zone” for food temperatures. It is a range of temperatures that makes it ideal for bacteria to grow.
However, this temperature violation at the Gastronome was only found to be a minor violation. Ultimately, the Gastronome was given a “D” rating after the inspection, but no citations or fees were ever collected.
There is no word yet whether the Gastronome will apply similar food inspection procedures like those of Cal State Sacramento.