UPDATE: Tin Cow owner says complete renovation underway after health violations

Photo: Tin Cow sign Source: WEAR

A downtown Pensacola restaurant has closed its doors for a second time this month. The Tin Cow restaurant was cited for a number of health violations at the beginning of the month.

A second inspection this week found similar violations.

Tin Cow in downtown Pensacola is cleaning up after nearly a dozen violations were found on Thursday.

Rodents, rodent droppings, dead cockroaches and food contaminated by animals were some of the repeated problems. Some of the problems were pictured and posted on social media by a former employee.

Deborah Dunlap owns several properties in downtown Pensacola.

She speculated on Facebook Friday morning that, "There are not enough health inspectors for the number of restaurants in our area."

Tin Cow customers hope the problems are fixed and the restaurant reopens soon.

"I know that guy took a lot of pride and quality in his restaurants here," said Evan Alston.

"It is incredibly surprising just because they're such in a good location right here. It's just crazy that they would let something like that happen," Alexandra Garlock said.

A spokesperson for Pensacola Downtown Improvement Board said keeping rats and mice out of 100-year-old buildings is challenging.

Tin Cow owner Joe Abston said he is closing the restaurant for the next several days for major cleaning and renovation.

"Once he gets his problem under control I'd be willing to try it again," explained Alston.

There are no reports of anyone getting sick because of the violations.

There is also no word on exactly how long it'll take before the business is back open.

Abston issued the following statement on Friday at 11:30 a.m.:

The health and safety of our patrons is and will always be our main priority at The Tin Cow. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) visited our restaurant at 102 S. Palafox Street in downtown Pensacola today, and we passed their inspection.
However, for The Tin Cow, that is not enough.
In order to maintain the highest quality of food and service for our guests, as well as a safe working environment for our employees, we have decided to close the restaurant for the next several days for a full renovation.
During this time, we will conduct a thorough, deep cleaning using a trusted third-party company, as well as repair any and all damage to structures within our kitchen. We will also use this time to update and upgrade our entire restaurant, and establish a new training and daily cleaning protocol for all staff.
Additionally, we have hired an independent health inspection company to conduct multiple inspections of The Tin Cow to ensure that we exceed FDA codes for health and safety. That company will visit our restaurant today to conduct its first inspection.
We will be hiring a public safety and health expert to provide ongoing support of our facilities and protocols.
We are fully committed to restoring the trust of our customers by doing everything possible to make sure the establishment exceeds health code requirements and is a safe, inviting place to dine. We look forward to welcoming back our loyal patrons when we relaunch as a new and improved The Tin Cow.
For more updates about our reopening, we’re asking guests to stay tuned to our Facebook Page. We will be sharing the renovation process through Facebook Live broadcasts over the next week.

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