Dojo Restaurant on West Fourth Street at Mercer has been closed since a visit by the Department of Health on Sept. 13...
The DOH closure notice has remained in full view on the front door without any accompanying note. There's no mention of a closure on Dojo's website or social media.
And now few regulars are starting to worry that Dojo won't be coming back at all. (An email to Dojo was not returned; the phone goes to a message about a Time Warner Cable phone customer that hasn't set up a voice mailbox.)
According to the DOH website, Dojo's received 62 violation points during the visit on Sept. 13, including for:
1) Hot food item not held at or above 140º F.
2) Cold food item held above 41º F (smoked fish and reduced oxygen packaged foods above 38 ºF) except during necessary preparation.
3) Raw, cooked or prepared food is adulterated, contaminated, cross-contaminated, or not discarded in accordance with HACCP plan.
4) Food contact surface not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use and following any activity when contamination may have occurred.
So the Dojo faithful remain hopeful that ownership just hasn't thrown in the towel. (In May 2013 there were reports that Dojo was shutting down due to a rent hike.)
Dojo, of course, got its start in the East Village... beginning with the Ice Cream Connection on St. Mark's Place between Second Avenue and Third Avenue in March 1970. Dojo's Japanese-inspired vegetarian cuisine came along in 1974. And via the Dojo website:
In 1982, Dojo took over the space next door and expanded even more. Then in 1991, Dojo in the West Village was created – both Dojo East and Dojo West were favorite local gems. Unfortunately in 2007, Dojo East was closed down due to high rent. BUT Dojo West is still going strong!