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Ogden’s Own gets new leader; liquor-maker still focused on growth

By Tim Vandenack - | Sep 4, 2021
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Mark Fine, the new president of Ogden's Own Distillery, demonstrates the production process inside the facility on Aug. 26, 2021.
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Some of the new canned products offered by Ogden's Own Distillery are pictured in the small retail outlet inside the facility on Aug. 26, 2021.
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Mark Fine, the new president of Ogden's Own Distillery, is pictured in what's to be a bar inside the facility on Aug. 26, 2021.

OGDEN — A new leader is at the helm of Ogden’s Own distillery as the local liquor manufacturer moves to grow and expand.

Ogden’s Own, most known, perhaps, for its Five Wives Vodka, moved into a new production facility in west Ogden last year and now Steven Conlin, co-founder of the firm, has stepped down as president. Mark Fine, a veteran of the wine and spirits industry, has taken over as company president.

“We want to show what’s happening here in beautiful Ogden at the base of the Wasatch mountains,” Fine said. One of his missions, he said, is to showcase the company’s many “messages in the bottle” and to spread the word about the distiller’s varied, sometimes quirky products.

Ogden’s Own, launched in 2009, has been in the midst of a transformation over the past two years or so as it has sought outside investors to aid with expansion, moved into a new facility to accommodate higher production and now, brought a new leader on board. Conlin, 55, is retiring “and sailing the world,” said Tim Smith, the Ogden’s Own production manager and the other force behind the business’s creation.

Fine “brings the experience (the distillery’s board members) were looking for in a candidate,” the company said in response to a Standard-Examiner query. “While the strategies are not changing, Mark brings 30 years of industry experience to the job and is expected to continue Ogden’s Own Distillery growth strategy.”

Fine, who came here from Miami, most recently served as director of beverage at Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. He has also worked for distributors, importers and suppliers in the industry.

His replacement, Conlin said, “has a magic touch for taking beverage brands to new heights.” Fine, he went on, is “the perfect person to take what we’ve built to the next level.”

Among Ogden’s Own advances of late are expansion into the Nevada, Michigan and Idaho markets, Fine said, with more on the horizon, including Florida. The COVID-19 pandemic made expansion tough, but the firm is “prepared to ramp up once life normalizes more,” the company said.

Ogden’s Own, which operates a small retail outlet, has also launched several new canned products since late last year, including whiskey and cola, Moscow mule and huckleberry lemonade concoctions. Opening soon, Fine hopes, will be a new bar inside the Ogden’s Own facility, though timing will depend on how quickly the company can secure the required bar license from state regulators.

When it opens — as early as November or as late as next summer, perhaps — the bar will showcase Ogden’s Own products and the varied cocktails that can be made with them. In its now-unfinished state, it features chandeliers, mirrors and vintage furnishings and Fine is hoping it lures visitors from along the Wasatch Front. The new Ogden’s Own facility, in operation since May 2020, is located at 615 W. Stockman Way.

“We will make it worth the trip to come from Salt Lake City to Ogden,” Fine said. He also plans to reach out to bartenders to convert them to “brand loyalists” of Ogden’s Own.

Ogden’s Own also makes Porter’s Whiskeys, Madam Pattirini Gin and more. The firm is devoted “to championing freedom of expression” and Fine called its products “a great value that over-delivers.”

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