Mariano Martinez, owner of Mariano’s, says he was excited to receive a call from the show asking if they would be interested in welcoming Guillermo as one of his limited stops for Kimmel, but after not hearing back from production for a period of time, he assumed the show had picked another destination. Martinez remembers that the moment he stopped waiting for a call, the word came that his restaurant had won the coveted spot, beating out the flashier State Fair.
“That right there in itself was an honor,” Martinez says. “That they picked Mariano’s over the State Fair of Texas, with all the activities and the corny dogs, and Big Tex and everything else. I don’t know how they made that decision, but I’m just happy they did.”
There’s no word on exactly what Guillermo will be doing when he arrives to Mariano’s, but it’s safe to assume the staff and anyone within reach of the security-guard-turned-TV-sidekick, should stay on their toes. Guillermo interviews are known for catching those under the spotlight off guard in the most unexpectedly hilarious ways.
“That right there in itself was an honor. That they picked Mariano’s over the State Fair of Texas, with all the activities and the corny dogs, and Big Tex and everything else.” — Mariano Martinez
This won’t be the first time Martinez has had network TV camera crews in his presence. In 2011, Nightline ran a profile on Martinez, as the successful restaurateur owns two Mariano’s and five locations of La Hacienda Ranch spread across North Texas. Martinez is also known as the inventor of the frozen margarita machine. At the time Nightline interviewed Martinez, his original frozen drink dispenser had been placed in the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Martinez proudly says the machine is still on display next to Julia Child’s kitchen in the D.C. museum.
Martinez says Kimmel's producers did not ask for anything out of the ordinary prior to their arrival for filming, but always the gracious host, Martinez is prepared to greet Guillermo with a present.
“I made a special little Emmy for him,” Martinez says. “In Spanish the letter M is pronounced Emmy, so it’s a little mini Tex-Mex Emmy. I had a friend of mine carve it out of wood … and it has my picture wearing a Mexican revolutionist outfit, for revolutionizing the margarita industry. And then you unscrew my head and sombrero, and it’s got a little hidden tequila thing.”
Martinez estimates the filming should take place around 6 p.m., and the footage will air later that evening, giving everyone a chance to see a slice of Dallas given the Hollywood treatment.