Tapas, while trendy in bigger cities, are new to Providence eaters, who often think Chavarria and Perez are announcing the opening of a "topless bar." But Tazza head chef Ben Lloyd says Westminster diners are more daring than they seem — he sells around three roasted bone marrows a week just at lunchtime.

So Flan y Ajo might help push the Downcity area along. Or the business might become just another eatery trying to carve out a niche on a street where flower boxes can't hide empty storefronts and small parking lots struggle to compete with the massiveness of the mall.

Downcity is a "funky area to put your finger on what's going to work," Perez says. But "the city needs something good."

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ARTICLES BY NICOLE FRIEDMAN
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