I was enjoying some craft sodas with some friends wile brewing a saison recently, and the idea of a sarsaparilla beer occurred to me as a not terrible idea. My instinct is to go with a pale ale (or IPA?), but maybe a stout or porter would work well too.
Has this been done before? When should I add the sarsaparilla (boil, post-boil, secondary, etc.), and in what form (extract, dried roots, etc.)? Does it make sense to add the other ingredients typically included in sarsaparilla soda (like sassafras, licorice, and wintergreen)?