Inside Martha Stewart’s Insta-Famous Farm in Katonah, New York

ByDavid M. Conte

May 10, 2022

Last Friday, I texted a friend a photo of me holding the leashes of two absurdly fluffy chow-chows against the backdrop of a greenhouse and unplanted trees. I thought no context was needed – and lo and behold, I was right. “NO. OH MY GOD. YOU KNOW I KNOW WHO THESE DOGS ARE. HOLY FUCKING SHIT,” began the first of a flurry of texts in response. For those following @marthastewart48, the events at the vast farm of 156 Martha Stewart’s acres in Katonah, New York are the source of endless fascination.These chow chows, for example, were among the pets that featured prominently in a recent article emblematic of why the Instagram account The 80-year-old tycoon’s burner has gained a cult following among people who ordinarily care no less about domesticity.’Burying the beautiful and unusual Princess Peony,’ she captioned a photo of her gardeners digging a hole.” The four dogs took her for an intruder and killed her helpless little self. ” Was that really what a day in the life of Martha’s farm was like?

I had wondered about this for about eight years when I discovered @marthastewart48, but my love for Martha goes back much further. The first and only time I skipped class was to attend a recording of The Martha Stewart Show. (My aunt framed a selfie I took in public and gave it to me that year for Christmas.) Back then, it was about flipping through the pages of her magazine and marveling at the fact that someone so, well, perfect, had shamelessly gone to jail – a fact she recently brought to public attention by selling replicas of a nativity scene she made while she was behind bars.

But for a while now, it’s all been about this Instagram. It’s a bit of a stretch to call it a burner account these days, but the fact that @marthastewart’s rogue counterpart is now verified hasn’t changed the diabolical post style that the 1.6 million d Stewart’s subscribers have come to love it. And while the ‘grams follow Stewart around the world, many of his most iconic posts depict his daily life on the farm. So imagine my delight when I received an invitation to join Stewart there for “Martha-ritas” on Cinco de Mayo, in honor of a collection of crystal goblets called – what else? – The Martha, produced in partnership with Baccarat.

After an hour and a half drive from Manhattan, I arrived at the estate that Stewart named Cantitote Corners not knowing what to expect. I hadn’t yet set a time for the interview, and I quickly understood why Baccarat’s publicist was so lax: true to her advice to hosts to feel as comfortable as their guests, Martha, because it seems much more appropriate to call it from here. outdoors – kept things casual. She was so discreet that it took me a few minutes to realize she was already there mingling, a Martha-rita grenade in her hand. His dogs – the aforementioned chow chows named Empress Han and Empress Qin, as well as two French bulldogs named Bete Noire and Creme Brule – roamed just as freely, gleefully unaware of their celebrity status as a guest after the guest tried to keep them still during Photos.

Martha knows her farm has acquired mythical status. “Well, I hope so!” she smiles, when I ask her if she was aware that her Instagram made the place iconic. “I hope it gets better and better.” In fact, she intends to make sure that is the case. With so much space to spare – “it’s okay way over there,” she gestures toward the property, “and way over there”—Martha strove to make her farm the largest maze in the world. (His passion for mazes is palpable; when I start recommending a New Yorker profile of the world’s greatest maze maker, Adrian Fisher, she cuts me off: “I read it, of course.”) The world’s largest maze, she tells me, is a maze in the shape of a Dole-owned pineapple that spans three -plus acres in Hawaii. “But it will be… Biggershe says, her eyes sparkling. “It’s going to take about five years to plant everything.”

During the sunny afternoon, there is only a moment that reminds us that technically this was all a promotion for her collaboration with the 258-year-old legacy crystal brand. At one point, we all gather around the pool for a spiel in which Martha informs us that she discovered Baccarat when a large collection came along with her purchase of another house in Maine. They featured glasses of all shapes and sizes, but none were up to the task of housing all the glory of a Martha-rita: her signature version of the cocktail, consisting of Casa Dragones Blanco tequila, fresh lime juice, “real” orange liqueur like Cointreau or Grand Marnier, a little sugar, the best salt she can find, and cubed frozen pomegranate extract. After praising the final crystal product, she gives the green light to Baccarat’s pink-haired CEO and President, Jim Shreve, to crush a piñata filled with citrus-flavored Martha Stewart CBD Wellness Gummies.

Soon it’s time for Martha to teach us how to make her signature guacamole, which requires fairly mundane instructions until it’s time to scoop out the flesh of a halved avocado. “Put it in a giant molcajete like that, that you bring back from Mexico on the plane and have your boyfriend carry it because it’s really heavy,” she says before pausing. “Is that Mexican music?” Returning to cutting, she makes one of many dry jokes: “We tried to get mariachis and they had a sore throat. Minutes later, his peacocks let out a chorus of cries that echo through the grounds. Martha imitates them.

The rest of the ingredients – cilantro, fleur de sel and, most importantly, fresh lime juice – are to be expected. But Marthe does not stop there. Emma, ​​a farm worker who taught her about Latin American cooking, put her on her mother’s side: cracking hard-boiled eggs with the avocado. Naturally, Martha came courtesy of her own farm, but she has some advice for those unlucky enough to own a large flock of chickens: place a steamer in a pot with a tight lid, bring the water boil just below and cover for four and a half minutes. “It doesn’t matter how fresh or old it is,” she said, shouting the New York Time for teaching him the technique, “the egg peels Perfectly.

It’s time to go, and absolutely no one is ready to go. Many have had a Martha-rita or two too many, but not Martha. “I drink very moderately,” she tells me. “I don’t want to be known as a drinker, I have too much to do! I like to have a few good drinks. When I point out that she recently made headlines for shading Ina Garten’s comment about drinking alcohol to deal with the pandemic, she ignores it. “Ina Garten is a very old friend, and she can do whatever she wants,” she says. The same goes, of course, for Martha: who else would quietly embark on building the world’s largest maze in their spare time?