A toast to local taprooms

Beer and wine are available at the new Adit Public House in Jacksonville.Photo by Julia Moore

Jacksonville's new Adit Public House, like the mine entrance it is named for, opens into a dimly lit treasure. Instead of gold ore, expect to find a motherlode of craft beer and local wine.

The small space in the center of the Orth Building at 150 S. Oregon St. marries metal stools, sleek table tops, a bar of polished aggregate-exposed concrete, wine barrels and a row of vintage refrigerators transformed into a dream line-up of kegerators stocked with small kegs that promise to provide freshness and variety.

Word of Mouth

Dining out with

the Mail Tribune

Adit Public House

150 S. Oregon St.

Jacksonville

541-899-5694

Apocalyse Brewing Co.

545 Rossanley Drive, Suite C

Medford

541-210-8550

Walkabout Brewing Co.

921 Mason Way

Medford

541-734-4677

Southern Oregon Brewing Co.

1922 United Way

Medford

541-776-9898

Beerworks

323 E. Main St.

Medford

541-770-9100

Adit has nine taps pouring a wide array of beer — Pabst Blue Ribbon, pale ales made with oatmeal or rye, a couple of IPAs, a stout — and one cider on the day we visited. The staff is knowledgeable and clearly cares about good beer.

John Guerrero, longtime winemaker for Valley View Winery outside Jacksonville and a home brewer, had planned to open a brewery, but, faced with a lengthy licensing process, started the taproom first.

Adit also pours a variety of local wines, including several made by Guerrero.

I had heard that Adit also planned to offer modest snacks such as cheese and charcuterie plates, but no food was offered when we visited. You are welcome to bring your own, though.

Order takeout from La Fiesta upstairs (I recommend the black bean and jalapeño nachos) or Bella Union. Stop in at Gary West Meats or Jacksonville Mercantile and assemble a gourmet tray of treats that pair perfectly with beer or wine.

Or take some quality beer home for a backyard barbecue. Adit fills growlers for $12.

Adit is open from 3 p.m. to midnight Monday through Wednesday and from noon to midnight Thursday through Sunday. Call 541-899-5694.

Adit is just the latest in a growing array of taprooms highlighting regional beer.

Apocalypse Brewing Co. has a perfect hideout tucked away behind a garage-style door at 545 Rossanley Drive, Suite C, Medford. Fans call it the bunker and gather there to watch sports or maybe a movie on the flat screen TV, or just while away a little time with the door rolled up to let in the fresh air. You might even meet a friendly dog.

Brewers Nick and Erin Ellis usually offer six varieties of their own small-batch beers with groovy names inspired by ominous events and one guest tap. Call 541-210-8550 for details.

Walkabout Brewing Company opened a tasting room at its 921 Mason Way facility nearly a year ago and has started serving pizza, nachos and quesadillas along with founder and head brewer Ross Litton's creations. Walkabout has seven taps for its beers on and keeps Bud Light in the mix, too. Check out a summer strawberry lager before it's gone.

The tasting room is open from 3 to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and noon to 5 p.m. on weekends. There is often live music on Friday evenings.

Southern Oregon Brewing Co. might be considered the granddaddy of the local casual taprooms that focus on beer, not food. It has been welcoming beer aficionados to pack in their own pizzas and keep an eye on the gleaming brew kettles visible behind the bar at 1922 United Way, Medford, for roughly five years.

Takeout and delivery food is welcome, but Tuesday through Saturday Firehouse Chuck Wagon parks right outside to serve fresh, hot food. The taproom is open from 3 to 9 p.m. daily, except Sunday, when it is open from noon to 6 p.m. If you want an inside look at brewing, tours are offered at 4 p.m. Saturday. Call 541-776-9898.

Downtown, Beerworks, 323 E. Main St., Medford, is another pioneer that proved how popular a great beer selection and a pile of takeout menus could be, especially when paired with a knowledgeable staff and customer base. Throw in a couple of televisions and a few board games and people will keep coming back. I know I do.

Find your favorite and raise a glass to local beer. Cheers!

— Anita Burke


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