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Before they opened Jai Ho in the spring of 2010, Sathya and Sujatha Narayan, an architect and a realtor, respectively, had never owned a restaurant. But when they moved to Denver eight years ago from Vancouver, they noticed a gap in the Indian offerings on the local dining scene. Since they'd always dreamed of owning their own place, when this spot in an Aurora strip mall became available, they picked up the lease and got to work, outfitting the large space with ornate wooden partitions that divide the dining room into two booth-lined sections and a front-and-center lounge. That's where Bollywood now plays on the mounted flat-screens and drinkers sit on padded ottomans around low tables; the colored candles, twangy Indian music and spice-riddled air combine to create a heady atmosphere all through Jai Ho. And then there"s the mind-addling menu, which is rooted in the southern portion of the continent with specialties from Kerala, Hyderabad and Tamil Nadu (specifically Chettinad) that highlight such ingredients as coconut, pickled gongura (a native sorrel leaf) and mango, all stewed and combined with lentils, chicken, mutton or fish and packed with enough heat to make you break into a sweat. Those dishes are supplemented with a handful of northern Indian preparations -- paneers, samosas and tandoori chicken -- as well as a few Indo-Chinese offerings. While you may have trouble deciphering the menu's cryptic descriptions -- which aren't very helpful but are very amusing -- once your meal arrives, you'll have no trouble recognizing the overall excellence of Jai Ho's food.