A restaurant in northern Cape Breton being threatened with charges by the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture has shut down.

The department said Down North Cook House near Dingwall was operating without a permit.

Barry MacGregor, acting director of food safety, said the water at the cookhouse does not meet food safety standards.

“It’s an order. A closure order was delivered to the facility on Sept. 6 by our food safety specialist and attempted to place it on the door of the facility and that was removed,” he said.

“We are hoping we are doing our due diligence by going through the public service announcement process, but as well we're compiling our information and we are seeking some legal advice to go through the courts as well.”

A provincial health department release advised patrons not to eat or drink at the restaurant.

“Customers of this establishment may be at risk of communicable diseases causing gastro-intestinal symptoms, including vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and fever,” read the statement.

The owner of the restaurant denies the allegations. Maureena Cook said she’s installed a UV water treatment system.

MacGregor said Cook hasn’t told his department yet.