Codename : Westfort Heart of Oak Alethorpe

While researching recipe ideas, I discovered the notion of adding oak chips to a beer after it has completed the first week of fermentation. The title is loosely inspired by the song Heart of Oak, an anthem used by many Commonwealth navies.


  • 2 lbs 10 oz Maris Otter malt (3.8L)
  • 1 oz Caramel malt (120L)
  • 1 oz Rye malt (3.5L)
  • 0.5 oz Black malt (450L)
  • 0.20 oz Cascade hops at 60 minutes
  • 0.20 oz Willemette hops at 15 minutes
  • ¼ tsp Irish Moss (optional) at 15 minutes
  • ¼ tsp yeast nutrient (optional) at 15 minutes
  • 0.20 oz Willemette hops at 10 minutes
  • 0.20 oz Willemette hops at 5 minutes
  • 0.20 oz Fuggle hops at 0 minutes
  • 6 ml Nottingham Ale yeast
  • 1o grams toasted oak for secondary fermentation

Vital Stats

Anticipated ABV : 7.0%
Anticipated IBU : 45
Anticipated SRM : 15
Target OG : 1.070
Pre-boil SG : 1.046
Target FG : 1,017
Brewhouse (in)efficiency : 67%

Brew Day

  •  Prepare 7.8L strike water, 159F. 
  • Add the milled grains to the bag. 
  • Place the bag in the hot water, set the timer for 75 minutes, and maintain the temperature at 152 F.
  • Calibrate the sonic screwdriver.
  • Lift the bag out of the water, and allow it to drip into the pot. Every bit of sugar that can be extracted will benefit the end ABV.
  • Bring up to a boil, 212F, set the timer for 60 minutes. Add hops, yeast nutrient and Irish Moss as prescribed above.
  • Sanitise everything required for fermentation.
  • Cool to room temp, an ice-bath or a snowbank work effectively.
  • Prepare yeast mixture.
  • Add wort to the jug. Pitch yeast.
  • Store in a cool place for primary fermentation for 7-14 days.

Secondary Fermentation

  • If you have a second carboy, sanitise it, allow it to dry, and add the toasted oak.
  • Siphon the contents from the primary carboy to the new carboy.
  • Don’t have a second carboy? Just add it to the existing one..
  • I am allowing the oak to infuse flavour for a week, feel free to extend the time for more oaky goodness.

Bottling Day

  • Sanitise everything required for bottling.
  • Transfer from carboy to bottling pot.
  • Prepare 24g corn sugar with enough hot water to dissolve it. Add to pot.
  • Bottle.
  • Preferably conduct bottle conditioning for at least 6 weeks. You can crack one open early, but you might be disappointed. You have been warned.

Brew Notes

  • Requisite gravity achieved, although I had to steep the grain for 90 minutes instead of the planned 75 minutes. Really not sure why.
  • I use cloth tea bags to contain the mess of  the dry hops, two of them opened during boil and gooed up the wort, hopefully it will settle out.

Brew day : 10-Nov-2022
Bottling day :