Naptown Pintcast: Carly & Brian Ogden of Attaboy Beer

Surprise! After a small hiatus, the Naptown Pintcast is back. And you’d better buckle up; I’ve got a backlog of episodes I will be firing your way, one after the other, as we head into the New Year. Stay tuned!

It’s no secret that Frederick has one of the best beer scenes in the state — maybe that’s why husband and wife Brian and Carley Ogden’s California dream of opening a brewery became a Maryland reality with Attaboy Beer.

Granted, the story of how this local, hop-forward Frederick favorite came to be wasn’t without its hurdles. A seemingly bad blind date, a batch of early homebrew dumped into sanitizer, a lost real estate opportunity in Baltimore…

But each of those tests and milestones came together to create the story of Carly and Brian — and Attaboy — in a way that’s relatable and makes it hard not to love them.

They push and support each other equally. They’ve started their family. They go to the mattresses for what’s right and always pull for the underdog. And yes, they will never require an invitation from you to speak their minds, but they’re always warm, welcoming and sincere.

(Oh, and they also make great beer.)

Carly & Brian’s little man, Thomas, was rightfully suspicious of Mr. Pint.

After having the distinct pleasure of serving alongside Carly during the Reform on Tap Task Force over the spring and summer months, I finally had a chance to sit down with both her and Brian in their taproom in Frederick.

Over a few beers, we talked about their story, their beer, the Maryland beer scene overall and what they’d love to see change.

During our chat, we also discussed:

  • How a bad blind date turned into a great blind date, which then turned into a brewery.
  • The time Attaboy Beer was almost a Baltimore brewery.
  • Their pride in the “wide demographic” of age ranges that visit their brewery.
  • How big beer buyouts erode the transparency of consumer choice.
  • How many don’t recognize small craft brewers as small business owners.
  • Carly’s experience on the Reform on Tap Task Force, including what surprised her the most about the experience.
  • The three-tier system and franchise law.
  • The danger of protectionist policy-making in the alcohol industry.
  • Their strong feelings about board games, including Brian’s obsession with the game Perfection.
  • And much, much more…

Okay, Here’s the Episode

“There are people like us who grew up drinking beer, and now we have kids.”

“We were like, ‘Why are we doing this? Just to get up every day, go to work, work hard, get a little sweaty — and, at the end of the day, just be happy.’”

“[Attaboy is] about trying to find some happiness that’s not based on a paycheck. It’s about the satisfaction of a job well done.”

“You have to look at [where beer really comes from]; because it seems like you’re making choices, but they’re already being made for you.”

“We don’t have a dog in the fight — these specific issues don’t impact Attaboy Beer. It’s wrong. Those limits are completely wrong.”

“You hear me speaking a lot because there are other brewers who can’t say anything. They’re getting bullied. They’re being told not to say anything.”

“Other states aren’t falling apart because you can sell a keg directly to a customer.”

“Putting a cap on barrels is essentially putting a cap on how much money we can make.”

“If you look around the country, you see these smaller brewers going into developing areas and bringing commerce and foot traffic and life into these areas that may not have been there before.”

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