The Middle Eastern cafe at London’s flagship Jewish community centre JW3 has been shut after only nine months over hygiene concerns.
An initial inspection in May by Camden Council found Baladyt, JW3’s food partner since January, “very disappointing.”
It awarded the cafe a ‘1’, the lowest ranking available, with major improvements deemed necessary in food hygiene.
In the interests of public health, JW3 commissioned a second independent inspection. The results also found the standards severely lacking.
In a statement seen by Jewish News, JW3 said with so many people coming through their doors, it was “crucial for us to have the best possible food offering for what is the beating heart of our community centre”.
However, during the trial period with Baladyt, “we became aware of a very disappointing food hygiene rating by Camden Council of Baladyt at JW3. Because the health and safety of our visitors is our top priority, we immediately began discussions with the Balady management to ensure each of the issues raised by Camden Council were swiftly remedied. Giving time for necessary improvements to be made, we also took the additional step of arranging an independent inspection.”
Following the second report, JW3’s management found that Baladyt was still “not offering the level of quality that is acceptable from our food partner and sufficient remedies had not been adequately delivered. As a result, Baladyt at JW3 has closed.”
JW3 is now focusing on finding a new catering partner “who will be able to serve our busy community to the highest possible standards and we are open to offers of interest. In the meantime, we will introduce a temporary solution to ensure our visitors are not left without food and drink.”
“We wish the Balady team all the best and thank them for all their hard work and efforts during our partnership.”
Baladyt was the fifth branch of the falafel eaterie ‘Balady’ also found at Temple Fortune, Camden, Leather Lane and Barnet.
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