Michael Bauer: Between Meals : Waiter, there's a hair in my soup
The Chronicle 2009
Covering your head in a restaurant kitchen is a San Francisco health code requirement
If you look into the open kitchens at many San Francisco restaurants, you'll discover some nice heads of hair. But should we really know that the line cook has beautiful dark, shoulder length hair? Or that the guy making your salad has spiky blond hair?
According to the San Francisco health codes, probably not. While it's considered "low risk" behavior in the whole scheme of health violations, the regulations clearly state:
044 Hair Restraints/Outer Garments/Nails/Rings - All employees preparing, serving or handling food or utensils shall wear clean, washable outer garments or uniforms and shall wear a hairnet, cap, or other suitable covering to confine hair. Gloves shall be worn if an employee has artificial nails, nail polish, or fingernails that are not clean and neatly trimmed (11402)
Yet in the past week, for example, I've seen uncovered heads in at least four different restaurants; a trend that seems to be increasing. While it's not going to kill you like some serious violations, picking a hair out of your beet and goat cheese salad isn't the most appetizing way to begin a meal.