Ignacio Chavez is the smiling face behind the grill at Ayden’s Burgers.
Greg Byrd | El Defensor Chieftain


Ignacio Chavez cooks at and helps run Ayden’s Burgers and More food truck. Ayden’s is a new food service and hopes to become a local staple in Socorro.

How did you start this food truck?

We began about six months ago. Me and my son, Derek Chavez, decided to start this food truck up because there wasn’t a lot of jobs here in town for us right now. Derek very much enjoys doing this.

Have you both been involved in the food service industry?

Yes. I have been doing this my whole life. My son who is 22 years old somewhat fell into this situation with me.

Please expand on your previous restaurant experiences.

I ran my own restaurant here in the past. It was called Armijo’s restaurant off of California Street. I ran that place for six years. Unfortunately, the business was sold off to another company.

What was it like running a restaurant?

It has always been what I love. My uncle Ernest Armijo ran that place for over 40 years before he passed away which is when I took over. Despite that ending, I have always liked and continue to want to cook.

What part of cooking do you enjoy?

Seeing people try out my own recipes is always a thrill. It’s always different. My biggest seller has always been the classic ‘Taco’ burgers. People come from all over the state for them. I have my own fresh recipe with the red chile. I try to keep it simple yet flavorful. Nothing extra needs to be added in.

Is there a downside of working in the service industry?

Finding business. As a lot of places are seeing, it’s hard to find steady work. It can be hard to take care of our own lives as well as our business lives.

Where does the Ayden’s Burgers food truck go around town?

We are serving food up Monday to Friday here at the town plaza. I asked the city council if we could sell here and they gave us the go ahead to set up our venue during the week.

Where did you get your truck?

I bought it from some guy here in town who sold it to me. I just decided I needed to buy this truck so we could serve some food to the neighborhood.

What do you have available cooking-wise at your disposal in the kitchen?

We have a large stove, deep fryers, air conditioners, everything else needed in there.

How do you handle things when you get busy?

We always have two cooks as well as a person working the window. Prep is the most important every day. Customers never have to ask for things other than good food.

Is there anything you would like to cook in the future?

We try to do specials everyday. This week for example we are serving turkey dinners that include macaroni, mashed potatoes, stuffing and of course red chile. Whatever people ask for we try to make it for them.

Does anything annoy you about cooking?

Nothing at all. I love cooking in all forms. If it wasn’t for the happy customers we wouldn’t have our life as a family. There’s no money around this business if you are up there complaining. Having conversations with the community is one of the best parts of my day.

Are you born and raised in Socorro?

I am. My parents Jimmy and Emma Chavez raised me here, also Socorro natives. Myself and my brother, James, and sister, April, grew up with me here. Now I have my wife Jenny and we have three boys, Jaron, Ignacio and my youngest Derek, who is working with me right now.

How important is it for your family to stay together?

Very important. This community has been going downhill the past few years. There’s a lot of people trying to move away. We want to fight and keep things here in Socorro. Reminding people how important being close to family is a big thing.

What is your favorite movie?

“Spider-Man.” All of them. My kids love those movies so I can enjoy watching it with them anytime. We like the web-slinger

If you won the lottery tomorrow, what would you do?

Help my kids in however they need. That’s the future. Pay off all of their bills and make sure my grandkids were set to get a great education. As long as my kids are happy.

If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would that be?

I don’t want to live anywhere else but here. I have no desire to be anywhere else other than here in Socorro. To be honest, I have barely spent time anywhere just in the state alone other than Socorro.

If there was one thing you could change about Socorro what would it be?

Get more restaurants and businesses here. I don’t know how it’s done, but we need to bring more things for this great community to enjoy in order to go back in the right direction.

Greg Byrd | El Defensor Chieftain