Alchemy /ˈalkəmē/ a seemingly magical process of transformation, creation, or combination.
The food Ben cooks is deeply comforting, yet vibrant. It is often full of subtle surprises—some may even say it’s alchemy. Yet, perhaps most of all, Ben is inspired by the phenomenal land and seascape of Maine; the bounty and gifts of all the beings here. He hopes to honor these lives, our family, and the change of seasons, via the food on our plates.
I think this is an amazing match-up of talent, and am looking forward to seeing how the synergies develop between Jackson’s food, Catapang’s cocktails and the stellar hospitality Magnus got known for in the short time they were open.
Magnus on Water (website, facebook, instagram, twitter) was launched by Carmen Harris, bartender Brian Catapang, general manager Brittany Saliwanchik and Julia Russell on January 18th 2020 and had a short run of regular service before being shutdown by the pandemic. They re-opened during this past summer for outdoor service on their granite patio.
Prior to moving to Maine, Jackson was a sous chef at Diner and Marlow and Sons and the executive sous chef Reynard in the Wythe Hotel in Brooklyn. In Portland Jackson was the founding chef at Drifters Wife which closed in 2020. Jackson was a James Beard Best Chef nominee in 2020 and Drifters was named one of the 10 best restaurants in America in 2018 by Bon Appétit. In the time since Drifters closed Jackson has been private chefing as well as operating events and the Beautiful Swimmer takeout pop-up series.
Magnus plans to open early this summer. Stay tuned to their instagram account for updates and further information.