If you’re going to spend 10 minutes of your finite life watching a video walkthrough of a celebrity’s home, you could do a lot worse than Dakota Johnson’s midcentury retreat in Los Angeles. Unlike the many mansions dotting Brentwood and Malibu with enough negative space to feel more like airplane hangars than homes, Johnson (of Fifty Shades of Grey fame) enjoys a house full of warm wood and shelves overflowing with books she’s enthusiastic about. And in her kitchen, she keeps several dozen limes.
The abundance of limes is not, in an of itself, an oddity. Anyone who’s made ceviche or guacamole for a crowd knows how quickly a lime can get used up, and it’s best to have more on hand than you think you might need. But after Johnson took an Architectural Digest film crew through her home early last year, she went mildly viral for a moment in the video in which she says of her tiered bamboo bowl full of limes, “I love limes. [laughs] I love them. They’re great and I love them so much. And I like to present them like this in my house.” (The moment happens at 4:55 in the video below.)
In retrospect, her reaction to the limes seems sardonic—a subtle eye-roll to whomever had staged her kitchen for the shoot with a strategic bowlful of limes to complement the bright green color of her cabinets. It’s all got a very Catalog Living vibe, and Johnson (already known for her deadpan tendencies) was probably just making a joke, more to herself than anyone else.
At last, nearly a year later, we have proof. On The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon this week, Fallon started his interview with Johnson by asking her what she does with all those limes in her kitchen.
“I actually didn’t even know that they were in there,” she said. “It was set dressing. I’m actually allergic to limes... mildly allergic. And honeydew melon... Limes make my tongue itch.”
When Fallon asked why, then, she had made such a show of the limes on her house tour, Johnson said, “It was hard to just ignore them, so I lied.” Fair enough!