Magnolias Bar on Broad Street received an A rating during its health inspection, which is displayed behind the bar. 

It’s Saturday night in Athens, and the bars are full. It’s a familiar sight for University of Georgia students, waiting in lines outside before having to battle a wall of people to get a drink. And now you’re finally trying to catch the eye of the bartender, one elbow on bar top.

When you’re handed a drink, pulling your elbow off the bar feels like pulling velcro. Your glass leaves a sticky ring in the table, causing you to look for the nearest napkins and water.

Maybe the next bar doesn’t have sticky tables, but your shoes stick to the ground. Or the bathroom is trashed. Or the roof is leaking.

Want to avoid places like these? Check out this guide for the health scores of your favorite Athens bars and music venues as well as some tips on how to read the health inspection sheets.

How to read the sheet

Customers should look at the types of violations rather than the score itself, said Keli Hinson, Northeast environmental health district director. Little things add up, so depending on what you’re looking for in an establishment, just looking at the number may not cut it.

An establishment with a B score may have no critical violations, whereas an establishment with an A score may have a critical violation, which must be addressed immediately.

Critical violations are given out if a restaurant or eating establishment demonstrates a risk factor, which includes improper food-storing temperatures, contaminated equipment and poor personal hygiene.

Generally, an A means Food Safety Excellence; B, Satisfactory Compliance; C, Marginal Compliance; U, Unsatisfactory Compliance.

A failing health score is anything below a 70 and requires an immediate follow up inspection.

These violations were found at the specific time of inspection and may have since been fixed. For more details about the specific violations for each establishment, check them out here.

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