Re:Bad news for LC's fans
Until they are closed down for good, I will continue to be a fan. Being in the restaurant business, I know that a commercial kitchen will never look like a home kitchen. I don't care if it's in a dive like LC's or a white table cloth, internationally acclaimed, high end joint like Charlie Trotter's, you simply cannot address cleanliness issues in a working restaurant kitchen in the same way you would your own home. There are levels of acceptability and that's what the health department is there to determine and enforce. I've seen plenty of restaurants temporarily closed down, only to bounce back stronger and better than ever.
Sun Wah BBQ, here in Chicago is a prime example. They've been around for decades in a small Uptown location, recently becoming the darlings of Chicago foodie site, LTHForum.com. They were shut down briefly for code violations similar to the ones mentioned in the LC's article. They cleaned up their act, reopened within a week or so, and six months later were doing well enough to move into a larger, newer, more high profile location. They were just written up this past week in the Chicago Tribune's "Good Eating" food section. Their Peking duck and several other stand out dishes were highly praised with no mention of any past health code violations. I would have no qualms whatsoever about dining at Sun Wah, although I believe I'll wait until the crowds generated by the article die down.
If LC's is open when we next visit KC, you can be sure I will stop in for a burnt ends sandwich, fries, and an order of their outstanding beans.