Readers picked Southern Oregon Brewing Co. as the home of the best local microbrew for the second year running.
Tom Hammond, the owner and president who launched the brewery in 2007, says head brewer Scott Saulsbury works with "the best raw materials we can get our hands on."
But good beer is only part of the story, Hammond says, crediting the win to his company's effort to be a part of the community.
"People are starting to recognize us as their home beer," he says. "People identify with us."
Southern Oregon Brewing beers are available across Oregon and entered the Seattle market this year. Here at home, the company has teamed up with Rotary, Community Works, Hearts with a Mission, Help Now! Advocacy Center, ScienceWorks and the Medford Parks and Recreation Foundation on fundraisers, Hammond says. It recently received a small business excellence award from the Chamber of Medford/Jackson County.
The brewery and tap room at 1922 United Way, Medford, employ six people, and Hammond says he hopes to hire more in the next year or so.
Other favorites: Caldera Brewing Co. and Standing Stone Brewing Co., both of Ashland.