Lucas Aveldaño | He went through the U, had to leave and now has restaurants in Spain: “I always wanted to invest in this”

Lucas Aveldaño played for Universidad de Chile in 2019 and after the social outbreak he went to Iquique. The abrupt end of the National Championship prevented the Argentine from playing the remaining matches for the automatic renewal of his contract, emigrating north. The former defender today resides in Majorca, Spain, and spoke with AS to tell what has become of his life, after spending two seasons in Chilean soccer.

“We are opening a third restaurant, we are here in Palma de Mallorca. In 2019 we opened two, the first one of Asian Hawaiian and Mediterranean fusion, which is a bit of the passion of my chef partner. He likes that kitchen. In time, we were given a transfer of premises and we opened a second one, for meats, which is a bit about our roots, roasting with firewood and all that,” said Aveldaño, who also played in the Majorca Y Tenerife in the Hispanic league.

“Now we were given a place here in a pedestrian plaza and we opened the third one. We have Italian ancestry, so we opened a pin shop. It is a concept like pizza, nothing else has a difference in the mixture of flours and with longer fermentation, making a bit of an allusion to where we come from. We are very good with the gastronomic issue, which is something that has fascinated me since I was a child. I always wanted to invest in this and luckily it is working”, added the Argentine.

– Opening three restaurants in three years is no small thing…

– Yes, yes, we opened 2019 and then came two years of pandemic. We survived, which was the main objective, we did not expect to earn money, but we were able to achieve the objective. Today we are happy.

The former blue played until May this year in Spain.

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The former blue played until May this year in Spain.

– Is it dedicated solely to this?

– Yes, now only to this. Until May, yes, I was playing in the third category of Spain, but we finished and I came here. In the summer we started to do private events with the restaurants, one little thing and another. I always wanted to dedicate myself to this once my career as a footballer ended, but times were advanced. I’ve already gotten into the wheel a bit, I’m a cog in all this. If I had to leave (to play again) it would be like going back.

– Did he retire then?

– I already made the decision, I didn’t make it public or anything. This item keeps me quite busy, so nothing… I retired. Almost by force, because if it had been up to me I would have kept playing. In fact, I received some calls and physically I’m fine, I take good care of myself. I’m training something else, I like to be well and I’m doing mountain races. I keep busy, with a healthy head.

– Does he get into the kitchen or does he only see the management issue?

– I see the management part, administration, I also see the menu, if changes have to be made, what dishes to include. I also take care of the issue of social networks, which is important. I interact with suppliers, I see the orders that arrive, I do a little of everything. In the pure and simple kitchen, obviously not. If something ever happens or someone leaves, I could get in without problems, yes.

– Do football people visit you in your restaurants? You played there in Mallorca and Tenerife.

– Yes, people arrive. Here I played for Mallorca. We’ve done interviews, you know I’m in it now. Well, with ‘Mati’ (Matías) Rodríguez I made a very good friendship when I was in the U. He is part of the second restaurant, he now wanted to get involved in the pinsería project as well. He has a part as a partner, we are friends. He bet and things went very well. He liked this pinsería proposal, we are the first in Mallorca. In fact, I think the concept is not yet known in South America, if even here it is unknown. It’s a novel product and it’s going to be good, the concept is going to hit.

Aveldaño, to the center, in front of the meat restaurant.

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Aveldaño, to the center, in front of the meat restaurant.

– Have you been visited by Chileans in restaurants? Any fan of the U?

– Yes, I have come across some. In fact, the grill I have in the meat restaurant is Chilean and he is a fan of the U. He has been working with us for more than a year. There are Chileans around here, I have come across people this summer. Mallorca is very touristy, they come from all over the world. Also because of the economy, many are coming. Well, what am I going to talk about Argentines, it’s mined. Many people from those sides are living here.

– Are you permanently based in Mallorca? Aren’t you evaluating returning to Argentina at some point?

– Since I played in 2015 and 2016 here in Mallorca, I always knew that I was going to stay here. It is a charming island, very beautiful, which was not clear to me what I was going to dedicate myself to. I did want to focus on gastronomy, but I didn’t know how to start. My partner is from Rafaela, my city in Argentina, he was living here when I came, working as a hotel chef. He had told him that he wanted to invest in gastronomy, it was 2016. Three years later he proposed to invest in that. Well, we bet with the first restaurant. Also, my parents and my brother are also living here. I have practically all my family, so I am settled in the city.

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