Mark Guerra, chef at Lilys Restaurant in Mt. Shasta, is being featured cooking on KTVL News 10’s West Coast Flavors program on Thursday evenings.
The first of a six-week series of his shows aired Jan. 24. They are hosted by KTVL anchor Trish Glose during her 5 p.m. newscast.
Guerra, who was first hired by recently retired Lilys owner Ron Childers 11 years ago, said he took all the ingredients needed to film the shows to KTVL’s studio kitchen in Central Point, Ore.
With a film crew and Glose in the studio, the cameras captured Guerra preparing two dinner items, two breakfast items, and two appetizers.
The six episodes are being aired on consecutive Thursday evenings by the Medford TV station with promos leading up to it.
Guerra said he had previously been involved with other chefs while they were filmed, but this was a first for him.
“It’s something to see yourself on TV,” he said the day after the first episode was aired last week.
Guerra said the kitchen used for the filming was a room in the West Coast Appliances warehouse in Central Point which has been set up for the TV station to use.
Now working for new Lilys owners Jon and Mary Herfindahl, Guerra is continuing to prepare his Pacific Rim style meals at the restaurant on S. Mt. Shasta Blvd.
Before moving to Mt. Shasta, he was friends with Alan Nebiolini in the San Francisco Bay Area. He and Alan married sisters, and Guerra eventually followed Alan to Mt. Shasta, where his father, the late Fred Nebiolini, was the longtime owner of Nebiolini’s Vets Club.
Now, through his Mana’e Co. catering company, Guerra is doing food for Happy Hour on Thursdays at the Vets Club, which is where he was when his first show came on TV last week.
He said he has left and returned to Mt. Shasta a couple times since he was first hired by Childers, and each time he returns with expanded horizons as a chef.
Childers hired him back each time he returned to Lilys “because he understood me leaving to get more food knowledge. I like to bring flavors that have never been here before,” Guerra said.
He regularly travels to Pebble Beach to work as a chef for events including the AT&T Pro-Am golf tournament, Councours d’Elegance car show and Pebble Beach Food & Wine.
He has worked with many top finishers in the Top Chef TV contest and other big name chefs including his mentor Christophe Bony, Roy Yamaguchi of Roy’s at Pebble Beach, Michael Ginor of Hudson Valley Foie Gras, Lenny Messina, and Robert Irvine.
Guerra said he once worked for a week without pay under Christophe Bony at Rocky Point Restaurant in Carmel. He slept in his car that week before landing a job as sous-chef. When Bony left after a few months, Guerra took over as chef. “He was a godsend in my life,” Guerra said of Bony.