What a Dish

An homage to sexy pinup girls and leading ladies

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he elaborately decorated, hidden-away treasure trove Cuchi Cuchi is a shrine to pin-up girls and sultry starring ladies of the elegant early days of Hollywood. Named for the favorite catchphrase of an idol of flirtatious fun, Cuchi Cuchi elevates drinking and dining to the ultimate level of glamour and mystique. The authentic interior decor surrounds diners like a movie set, with 19th-century stained-glass windows from an old Chicago bar, a portrait of Salome—the dancer of the seven veils—a huge photo of “Brazilian Bombshell” Carmen Miranda, costumed servers (above), weekly tarot-card readings (check the website for times), and a table with an LED top that lights up in weird patterns when it senses motion. Even the hostess stand looks like an evening dress. Oh, yeah, the food: The “small plates” menu is international in flavor, and equally erotic, with such things as Indian lamb. The vintage cocktails are inspired by the vixens whose likenesses decorate the walls.

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“Cuchi Cuchi” is the trademark of classical guitarist Maria Rosario Pilar Martinez Molina Baeza, who renamed herself Charo when she learned that she could make more money wiggling her curves. She took the catchphrase from her dog, who also wiggled when she called him that.

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