Despite the crazy, archaic beer laws in Maryland, there really are some wonderful breweries making great beer.
Thanks to the efforts of groups like the Brewers Association of Maryland (and even State Comptroller, Peter Franchot), the beer laws are getting eased, which is starting to make Maryland more attractive to potential breweries. Thus is part of the story behind one of the state’s hottest new breweries, Attaboy.
In 2016, founders Brian and Carly Ogden were looking to move back to the East Coast from their apartment in the San Francisco area and, after looking at areas including Savannah, GA and Baltimore, opened Attaboy near Carroll Creek in Frederick, MD.
Like most small breweries, their distribution is still a bit limited, so it was only recently that I had a chance to try their beer. After all, I’d had several friends and fans tell me that I needed to find some ASAP, so I was thrilled to see their Galaxy Maid IPA on a local beer list one afternoon.
Galaxy Maid is a NEIPA, an unfiltered New England-style IPA. NE IPAs, shorthand for New England, is a newer style of IPA that appeared around 2004 when the highly regarded Heady Topper was first released by The Alchemist Brewery in Vermont. But the style has really come into vogue over the last year or two.
They’re typically unfiltered, giving them a hazy, opaque look (sometimes similar to orange juice). The flavor is usually very fruity and citrus-like, but with less bitterness and a finish that’s not as dry as other IPAs.
True to form, Galaxy Maid is an opaque amber-orange color with good carbonation and a reasonable alcohol content of 6.2% ABV.
Brewed with Horizon hops (which have tastes considered floral and spicy), then with citrusy-tasting Galaxy hops added after fermentation, the beer has a lot of citrus flavor going on – grapefruit, lemon and a little orange. The hops do make it fairly bitter (perhaps more so than most NEIPAs), but it’s been balanced out with some nice, mild maltiness that adds a touch of sweetness.
This actually turned out to be a great introduction to their beers. I’ve since visited the brewery, and this one is still probably my favorite (their grisette – a light-bodied, farmhouse saison – was a close second).
I’ll definitely be back – and you should, too. Cheers!