We have adapted this recipe for a woodsy sassafras ale from Jereme Zimmerman’s book, Brew Beer Like a Yeti. “You can use sassafras flavoring if you prefer, but I like to use the real thing,” he writes. “I also like to add little bits of the forest when making this, such as spruce tips and oak bark. ... You can really take this basic formula and substitute various flavoring ingredients, malts, and yeasts to make what sounds good.”
For yeast, Zimmerman leaves it to dealer’s choice—American, Belgian, British, baker’s yeast, do what feels right—but we think a Norwegian kveik strain is a good fit here.
Batch size: 5 gallons (19 liters)
5 lb (2.3 kg) wheat dry malt extract (DME)
HOPS & ADDITIONS SCHEDULE
2.6 Tbs (38 ml) sassafras root at 60 minutes
0.25 oz (7 g) East Kent Goldings at 30 minutes (optional)
1.5 tsp (12 ml) dried orange peel at 0 minutes (optional)
5 spruce tips at 0 minutes
3.3 Tbs (49 ml) oak cambium (inner bark) post boil
Omega OYL-061 Voss Kveik
Bring 5 gallons (19 liters) of water just to a boil. Stir in the DME until fully dissolved. Add the sassafras. Reduce the heat to maintain a slight boil for 60 minutes, adding hops and additions according to the schedule. After 60 minutes, cut off the heat, then add the oak bark. Chill and aerate the wort, then pitch the yeast. If possible, ferment at 95–104°F (35–40°C). When fermentation is complete, prime and bottle or keg and carbonate.