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May 2003: Agua Ardiente

May 2003 Best Bites

Fans of Nuevo Latino cooking have a new dining spot Mauricio Fraga-Rosenfeld, owner of such hot locales as Chi-Cha Lounge on U Street, has opened Agua Ardiente, a restaurant and lounge.

The look is trendy-spiritual with Indian masks, red silk curtains, and a flower-strewn altar dedicated to the Madonna.

Food ranges from parrilladas, a Latino take on the "wrap," to a slew of ceviches made from tuna, shrimp, halibut, avocado, and hearts of palm. There will be tapas on the roster as well.

The restaurant is named for a popular Latin American liqueur, similar to sambuca, that translates to "fire water." Hector Guerra, who has worked the saute pans at Vida and Galileo, and Kinkead's, will be in charge of the kitchen.

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