Local News

Hepatitis A scare at Alta restaurant in West Village

The Market Mixed Berries or Blackberry Custard Tart at Alta restaurant in the West Village may have been prepared with a side of Hepatitis A, the Health Department is warning Friday night.

Diners who had dessert at the 64 W. 10th St. restaurant between March 23rd and April 2nd are at risk, and the Health Department is recommending immediate vaccinations as a precautionary measure. A restaurant food handler came down with Hepatitis A.

According to the press release: “Hepatitis A is spread by putting something in your mouth (even though it might look clean) that has been contaminated with traces of fecal matter from an infected person. Symptoms include jaundice (yellowing of eyes and skin), fatigue, abdominal pain, nausea, and diarrhea.


Food at Alta restaurant in the West Village may have passed Hepatitis A to diners between March 23rd and April 2nd, according to the Health Department. (Photo/Google Maps)

People who were exposed but have already received two doses of Hepatitis A vaccine sometime in their life do not need another shot; all others should be vaccinated.

“We are asking these restaurant patrons to get this vaccination as a precautionary measure,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley. “If people experience symptoms, they should see a doctor immediately. This incident serves as an important reminder to always wash your hands thoroughly to prevent the spread of disease.”

“We are working closely with the Health Department to ensure the safety of our customers,” said Christopher Chesnutt, owner of Alta restaurant. “This is an isolated incident and the infected employee is no longer on premises.”

The restaurant owners, who estimate some 3,000 people may have dined during those dates, are cooperating.  Anyone who believes they may have visited the restaurant during those dates can also call 311 for more information.


30 Comments to “Hepatitis A scare at Alta restaurant in West Village”

    None said:
    April 5, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    Please read the press release. A worker had Hepatitis A; there is no mention of the virus being found in actual food. Very poor journalism.

      DaveM said:
      April 6, 2013 at 9:05 AM

      Typical shoddy, inflammatory writing. These are not journalists. They are worse than then Enquirer.

      Guest said:
      April 6, 2013 at 12:55 PM

      Then why don't you go eat there and see what happens? CRAZY!

      monahco said:
      April 23, 2013 at 12:12 PM

      how suspicious that you're "anonymous"….hmmm, could you be the restaurant owner?

      Still a dirty germ-pool….BLECH!

    Joe Oberman said:
    April 6, 2013 at 4:33 PM

    Mayor Bloomberg IS more concerned about the size of soda, cigarettes, alcohol and weapon's magazines. Next he'll have a new dress code law for women. What, test ALL employees working in the food industry for disease?! Nah… NOT important to Mighty Mayor Bloomberg and crew (meaning his non-productive NY legislatures, who pass laws and CAN NOT enforce them).

      None said:
      April 6, 2013 at 5:16 PM

      Do you know ANYTHING about hepatitis A? It's not a chronic disease like other types of hepatitis; you catch it and are infectious for about 2 weeks, not your lifetime. Do you suggest we test all restaurant workers every 2 weeks for hepatitis A? Did you notice that once the worker went to the doctor and was diagnosed, the city immediately took action? And FYI, restaurant inspections look at, among others, availability of proper hand washing facilities for workers and glove use, which are meant precisely to keep the public safe from foodborne illness. How about you show some concern about a greater problem, like restaurant industry not paying decent wages or offering any health benefits to their workers. If food handlers had better wages and health coverage, more would likely have the means to get vaccinated against infections such as hep A.

    Guest said:
    April 6, 2013 at 5:09 PM

    Manny, the manager, is NOT offering refunds or apologies. His message to me (who ate there last week): If you ate there and possibly contracted Hep A – too bad – get yourself a vaccine because there is nothing the restaurant can do.

    elements bar said:
    April 22, 2013 at 1:05 AM

    When this issue came out I have been minimizing my dining out in restaurants. It's the only way I know to keep away from diseases.

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