Article by Matthew Schneier, The New York Times
Martha Stewart arrived for dinner at the back-room chef’s table of the Nice Guy restaurant here recently, on what happened to be Taco Tuesday. The specialty of the house, the waitress told her, was its own interpretation of a Jack in the Box taco, a staple of Southern California drive-through fast-food cuisine.
She had just come from a party given by a friend, the White House decorator Michael S. Smith, for a book entitled “Great Houses, Modern Aristocrats.” But the unflappable doyenne of cooking, craftmaking, décor and home entertaining, used to striding between worlds, didn’t blink. She ordered two.
In blew the rapper Snoop Dogg, her friend and soon-to-be TV co-host, and sat down. Ms. Stewart offered him one.
“What did they call this?” she said. “A Jack in the Box taco?”
“Oh, come on, no you didn’t,” Snoop Dogg said. “I know what this is. I’ve been getting these at 2 in the morning.”
She ordered sauvignon blanc; he ordered a Coke. Dinner had begun.
Ms. Stewart, 75, and Snoop Dogg, 45, despite their differences, are regular dining companions, a fact that may or may not surprise you. VH1, the cable network, is rather hoping that it does — and that that surprise will be a potent draw for its new series, “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party,” whose premiere is Monday night.
“If you would’ve told me five years ago these two would have had a TV show I would’ve laughed myself sick,” said SallyAnn Salsano, an executive producer of the show. But that is the desired effect of “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party,” which plays the opposite public personas of its hosts — she, the often-parodied picture of Westport perfectionism, he the stoner-pimp of Long Beach — for maximum effect: She says potato, he says potizzle.
(Their private personas may be more similar than they let on: They are, after all, both wealthy celebrities of decadeslong standing. When Snoop Dogg arrived at dinner wearing a shirt, sweater vest and bow tie by Polo Ralph Lauren, Ms. Stewart chuckled her approval. “You know, I live next door to Ralph, in Bedford,” she said. “I have the farmette next to his estate.”)
On the show, the two prepare meals in a his-and-hers set of adjoining kitchens — his, purple and gold; hers, shelter-magazine white — with a revolving cast of celebrity friends, then sit down to eat and banter.