“Not even the tourists that eat there deserve this”


“Dear PoPville,

This disgusting scene was seen Tuesday around noon in front of Ollie’s Trolley at 12th and F St NW. Not even the tourists that eat there deserve this.”

Close up photo after the jump.


83 Comment

  • “Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight.”
    ― Albert Schweitzer

  • My office had lunch there in like 2002. Half the attendees got food poisoning. True story.

  • nightborn

    Anyone who eats at Olley’s Trolley deserves that. Their nasty reheated frozen food is unfit for human consumption and always has been.

  • justinbc

    If you think this is bad you should see how it’s made.

  • Who is their meat distributor? This is absolutely disgusting and yet another reason I do not eat red meat (and specifically, industrial meats of any kind). If they handle the remains like this, imagine how they handle the animals when they are alive. No respect for the humans who ingest the meat, and no respect for the animals who have to die to feed all the fatties in this country. Read Omnivore’s Dilemma if you want to get a sense of what the industrial meat industry is like, and how it is awful for animals and people alike.

    • justinbc

      FWIW, a lot of us meat eaters are not “fatties”.

    • brookland_rez

      According to their website:
      “All our burgers that we are now proudly serving are ALL Natural 100% Black Angus Roseda Premium Beef from the local Roseda Farm.
      We get fresh meat delivered daily and grind premium extra lean chuck and brisket several times a day.”

    • Wow, with a balanced and well thought out argument like that, you’re definitely going to win converts! Eat what you want to eat, other people will eat what they want. It’s none of your business.

      • it was pretty reasoned actually.

        -they feel it is disgusting and it supports their chosen diet.
        -they suggest that if one part of their process seems indicative of negligence, other parts might too.
        – the recommend that if you want to learn more, read a specific text.

        • A key part of any well-reasoned argument is to include ad hominem attacks aggressive negative commentary apparently.

    • “No respect for the humans who ingest the meat, and no respect for the animals who have to die to feed all the fatties in this country.”

      What does this sentence mean? You have no respect for people who eat red meat and also have no respect for the animals? Then you go on to reference a book like its some sort of doctrine. You’re the worst.

  • Let Russ Ptacek @ WUSA 9 know on facebook! He’ll shut em down!

    Glad I haven’t had an Ollie Burger since 2001 though. :l

  • What’s the story here? That meat comes from cows and you were totally forced to confront that today? Aww, sorry.

  • Is it normal for burger joints to make their own ground beef? I would have assumed that places like Ollie’s would purchase pre-made patties.

    • Ollies has the meat delivered and they have a butcher who dresses, then it’s ground right there. No frozen beef patties there.

      • Which is why this is such a public health concern. The exposed ‘exterior’ meant gets ground up, dispersing the ‘contaminated’ meat throughout. If this were are steak it would be no problem becuase the exposed portion would have direct heat applied during cooking, therefore raising the temperature high enough to kill most bacteria. The meat in the center of a ground beef patty won’t reach a high enough temperature to kill the bacteria if the burger is order anywhere between rare and medium-well.

        Do you want foodborne illnesses, because that’s how you get foodborne illnesses.

        • The meat is hung and washed with a citric acid/water mixture.

        • justinbc

          Your post is rather full of assumptions and backwards logic. You do not know what parts of this cut that Ollie’s would potentially use (after butchering it themselves) in their burgers. What is known, and has been documented, is that the ground beef you buy in most grocery stores does contain parts like this, which are often laden with bacteria because it comes in contact with parts of the cow that are near feces if they’re raised in poor conditions. This is why you should always ask if your restaurant grinds their burgers in house or gets prepackaged ground beef.

          • I was merely responding to Angela Ramirez’s post which stated “Ollies has the meat delivered and they have a butcher who dresses, then it’s ground right there. No frozen beef patties there.”

          • justinbc

            Do you have knowledge of how Ollie’s grinds their meat, and which parts get used? Because if not the first part of your response is just an uneducated guess.

          • I don’t know how Ollie’s grinds their meats. I based my response on my background in food safety and the information provided in the post in which I was responding.

          • Public Health:According to their website:
            “All our burgers that we are now proudly serving are ALL Natural 100% Black Angus Roseda Premium Beef from the local Roseda Farm.
            We get fresh meat delivered daily and grind premium extra lean chuck and brisket several times a day.

          • If their “premium extra lean chuck and brisket” that they grind daily is included in the picture above then my orignal response still applies.

  • How do we know that the guy in the photo isn’t calling his corporate office to tell them that the meat became unfit for consumption during shipping and not suitable for delivery? Can we not jump to conclusions ALL THE TIME?

    In other news, that is pretty gross.

  • I cant tell if the other meat on the side is in a package. Maybe this one came out during shipping (packaging is on the side) and the guy is calling on how to handle the situation. Probably not though. Let’s burn the witch!

  • The same distributer caters their meat to Central by michel richard near Ollie’s or other 5 star restaurants. in Dc Met area. I don’t hear/read that customers who went there got sick from their meat… funny…
    It seems like that some people gets paid to write negative reviews (like Yelp). I (tour guy and love burgers) have sent many tour groups to Ollie’s thoughtout the years and we’d never had problems. Other burger joints I know for the fast that they don’t grind their meat and use pre-packed burger or frozen which stays in Frige or freezer for 7-10days. People who got sick from Ollie’s food, I don’t believe that it was Olle’s fault. they would have reported to health dept or Ollie’s if that is so. I never read on the paper that Ollie’s was shut down or violated for any health code or something. Without the validation of the quality of their meat, we cannot bash their business. Every restaurant has flaws, even Five guys, Ben’s chili bowl, etc…….

    • Think I read this 3 times and I still have no idea what is being said

      • justinbc

        It’s a guy named Lisa, obviously.

        • LOL!
          As for the argument of “People who got sick from Ollie’s food, I don’t believe that it was Olle’s fault. they would have reported to health dept or Ollie’s if that is so.” — I doubt it. Especially if you’re a tourist, are you really going to take time out of your visit to D.C. to look up the relevant authorities and complain?
          When I got sick after my first and last time getting takeout from North Sea (in Adams Morgan), I didn’t complain to North Sea or to the health authorities — I just never ate there again.

  • Ollies has meat delivered and then the butcher at the restaurant finishes the job. It’s ground and cooked fresh. No frozen patties at Ollies.

  • Did you think the cows shit out perfectly shaped burgers and steaks?

  • I don’t see the problem here, then again I used to be a butcher.

    • +1,000

      Has one here ever been outside the US (and I’m talking places like Europe, not developing world). Butcher shops routinely have meat sitting out or hanging, sometimes in freezers sometimes on the counter. It doesn’t make it “contaminated” or unsafe to eat. As someone mentioned above it is cleaned before processing.

      • brookland_rez

        When I lived in Ecuador, meat used to hang out in the open at the markets, with flies buzzing all around. But I didn’t eat meat unless is was cooked thoroughly. Once I did accidentally eat some beef that wasn’t cooked all the way and I got sick with E. Coli.
        It’s good that we have higher standards of cleanliness in this country.

    • Yeah, it’s not like they left the meat out in the sun all afternoon. This is how meat is delivered to high end places (like Peter Lugar’s in NYC). Whole sides of carcasses are carried in by hand.
      Best lamb I ever had was in Beijing, China from a Xinjiang restaurant. The halal butcher was quartering it on a butcher table in the alley next to the restaurant, hung the various parts it in the door way, and cut off the pieces for my meal. Friggin amazing, though I was a bit taken aback by the nonchalant spectacle of the situation.

  • I don’t know much about butchering so I can’t understand the context of what’s going on, but it looks like those are unusable scraps that aren’t being fed to people. Still gross that it’s lying around contaminating things though.

  • Not sure if I see the problem…. How do you expect your meat to be delivered?

  • -1 That’s pretty mean.

  • As a former vegetarian, one-time farm kid, and occasional meat-eater, I’m confused about the problem. Is it the lack of packaging? Or is it the fact that you can still tell this meat was once part of an animal? I’m with all those who say that if you are uncomfortable confronting the nature of how your food gets to you, you probably shouldn’t be eating it.

    • Daughter of a butcher here, I assume it is the lack of packaging. That’s what stood out to me anyway as a sanitation issue. The side of beef itself didn’t bother me.

    • Yeah I’m also confused. Is it because it’s not packaged and kind of just sitting in a box on the street? Isn’t that just what meat looks like?

      • In the first picture, an unwrapped side of beef appears to be in contact with the truckbed. Perhaps not the most sanitary of locations.

      • Yeah, for example, I know what dead animals look like. But when I buy meat at the grocery store, I like it to be packaged. I don’t just throw it in a dirty cardboard box and wheel it home in the open air. See?

    • Yeah, I guess most of you had never been through a place like the Meatpacking District in NY like 15-20 years ago, when you could walk right down the street and pretty much brush up against whole pig and cow carcasses.

      • That may be, but we live in the 21st century where we have regulations. Per the FDA Food Code Paragraph 3-202.15 Package Integrity. FOOD packages shall be in good condition and protect the integrity of the contents so that the FOOD is not exposed to ADULTERATION or potential contaminants.

        • Regulatory fail–USDA regulates fresh meat; FDA has nothing to do with it. Try 9 CFR rather than 21.

          • Intro to the FDA Food Code “The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Food Safety and Inspection Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) are pleased to announce the release of the 2013 and eighth edition of the Food Code. The Food Code is a model code and reference document for state, city, county and tribal agencies that regulate operations such as restaurants, retail food stores, food vendors, and foodservice operations in institutions such as schools, hospitals, assisted living, nursing homes and child care centers. Food safety practices at these facilities play a critical role in preventing foodbome illness. The Food Code establishes practical, science-based guidance for mitigating risk factors that are known to cause or contribute to foodbome illness outbreaks associated with retail and foodservice establishments and is an important part of strengthening our nation’s food protection system.”

    • Glad I’m not the only one confused here. Cow + elbow grease = hamburger. You don’t get hamburgers without the cow… I also agree with the comment about walking through the meatpacking district. Or any market place in any country other than the United States and Canada… There are all sorts of dead everything looking at you and lying on truck beds and wooden pallets and all sorts of things that are deemed “unsanitary” by U.S. standards. I’m sure the protective plastic wrap falls off meat on the way to all the small plates restaurants on 14th St. too, they’re just not kitschy places that make for easy targets, like Ollie’s.

    • Various food safety related issues:
      1.They didn’t package it
      2. They had it sitting on unclean surfaces (ie the truck bed)
      3. It was sitting out in the heat, and probably was going bad.

  • There is a boutique butchery near my house in Asheville. Has the best meat I have every had. I have been there during delivery — half and quarter animals carried in over a guys shoulder.

    Do people think that meat grows on farms and ranches inside plastic packages.

  • The issue for me is two fold, one the lack of packaging around the meat. It should have been put in a sanitary wrap of some kind at the butcher and then brought to the restaurant. The second issue for me is that they have left the back of the refrigerated truck open for what looks like a while while they unload. On a hot day, that means you can get the temps in the truck easily up into the 50s and 60s, maybe even the 70s. Those refrigeration units on those trucks can’t cool more than 10 degrees an hour, which means the rest of the meat in the truck will spoil during the remaining deliveries.

    • Not necessarily so. The temperature of the product would have to remain above 41°F for four hours or greater for it to become potentially hazardous. While the product may be exposed to temperatures greater than 41°F for than more than four hours, it doesn’t necessarily mean the product reached those temps.

    • Exactly. I don’t see why others fail to see how those of us less familiar with meat packing practices may be a bit disturbed to see meat in direct contact with the bed of the truck on a hot day. But thankfully the meat packing industry and Ollies have sent a cadre of folks to educate us to how things really go down. Thanks guys!

    • justinbc

      “they have left the back of the refrigerated truck open for what looks like a while while they unload”
      What? How else are you supposed to unload without opening the door?

  • Ahhhh, I love seeing how hard people in DC work by spending their day having arguments on a comment thread about burgers they haven’t eaten in 14 years or even if they don’t eat meat at all…

    (wait, i guess writing this makes me just as guilty of hard work)

  • americans

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