He was a professional footballer for over a decade, but has ultimately won his maximum acclaim as head chef at Elkano, the Getaria-based family business that is the Mecca of grill enthusiasts.
There was a time when it seemed Aitor Arregi’s life decisions were taking him away from the family restaurant in Getaria in the Basque Country: he began studying engineering, then began a sports career as left back with several national football clubs, but he finally hung up his boots and took up his apron in 2002.
It was then, alongside his father Pedro Arregi, that he learned all the ins and outs of the catering industry and cookery from absolute scratch. Pedro Arregi was a grill chef, and a master pioneer in grill-cooking fish such as turbot or fish-throat kokotxas. Aitor followed in his footsteps, and even took one step more when Elkano won a Michelin Star in 2014.
He has won much recognition for his product cuisine, well-crafted in loyal deference to tradition. Arregi has managed to maintain his father’s grill mastery, and has also remained loyal and devoted to the sea and its products. The northern sea in Elkano, and also the southern sea in Cataria, the restaurant Arregi opened a few years ago in Chiclana to continue his explorations of the produce available from local seafarers on his grill.