BILL KOULMENTAS Recorded a failed inspection
Making a health inspector so angry that he closes down your restaurant — there’s an app for that.
The owner of the popular downtown diner George’s — where Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly have dined — wound up in hot water after he tried to skewer a city health inspector by recording his visit on an iPhone.
When the inspector spotted owner Bill Koulmentas’ cellphone scheme, he quickly hit George’s with a slew of violations — totaling 65 points.
Koulmentas was accused of everything from having cracked eggs to keeping cold food too hot and hot food too cold.
The weirdest rap was for 15 pounds of cooked cut potatoes and peppers that were allegedly “contaminated by one loose screw (approximately one inch in size) resting on food surface on grill.”
George’s was closed, and because Koulmentas won’t be able to file an appeal until Monday, his 13 to 14 employees will be out of work at least until then.
It was the first time the landmark diner at Greenwich and Rector streets has been shuttered since 9/11.
“They can do anything they want,” he said. “Something’s out of control here. It’s lies, lies, lies.”
Koulmentas said the ordeal that prompted him to break out his cellphone camera began at about 9:30 a.m. yesterday, when Inspector Kenneth Reid began writing one trumped-up violation after another.
When the inspector crawled under a dishwasher and reported finding 13 roaches in the wall, Koulmentas said he did the same and couldn’t spot anything.
“I’ll give you $1,000 if you show me a roach,” Koulmentas protested.
Having experienced a similarly overzealous inspection a month earlier, Koulmentas said he decided to document what was happening.
Out came the iPhone.
“When I took the picture, that was it,” he recalled.
Before he knew it, Koulmentas was holding several sheets of violations.
Health Department spokesman John Kelly defended the inspection as legitimate, noting that George’s — which has been in business since 1950 — had accumulated 56 points under another inspector last month.
“The inspector recommended closing the place [back then],” reported Kelly. “The supervisor said let’s give him an opportunity to fix the problem. Basically, he caught a break.”
In August — barely five months ago — the eatery was awarded the top grade of “A.”