DHEC drops in on two Grand Strand restaurants before Father's Day

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - If you're still thinking of a Fathers Day gift, why not take dad out for a bite to eat?

I stopped into two ethnic eateries- Habibi's Café and Market, and Athena's Bar and Grill. Both got the same letter grade, but very different reviews from the Department of Health.

DHEC handed out several A's this week, but Athena's scored a low A with an 88. The report lists two critical violations for the restaurant, located in the five points area of Myrtle Beach. The first, points out, "cooked" chicken, was partially raw and bloody. This violation was corrected on the spot. Another corrected, critical violation was for not sanitizing dishes. The bar and grill was also cited by DHEC for two minor violations, one for missing soap and paper towels by the sink.

I spoke to a frequent customer who says, what you see is what you get, and this restaurant is clean.

"If you walk in her kitchen or peep in there its good, I mean she's trying, she's an owner, doing it on her own, you know," says Brenda Alvarez.

I spoke to Athena and she says she's been in the business for a long time, she knows how to keep a place clean.  As far as the food,

"I love it, she delivers! I get the chicken sandwich it is awesome," says Alvarez.

Whether you want to stop in to eat, or take something home, Habibi's has plenty to offer. Both a market and a café known for falafel, kebobs, grocery and pastries.

One shopper, visits often from Little River. She takes the trip for the unique Lebanese cuisine.

"They're popular because they offer foods that are not available any place else," says Loretta Siotka.

Not to mention, DHEC scored them a 98. The restaurant lost 2 points for cleanliness but when a full inspection was complete, Habibi's Market and Café got a grade of an A.

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