Does dry hopping reduce the amount of carbonation that a beer has compared to the same beer that isn't dry hopped?

I have a larger that I have made before that seems to have less carbonation that it normally has and the only difference I have is the addition of Wakatau hops.

Should I increase the priming sugar when bottling?


Brewing details:-

20/10/2013 Muntons Premium Larger 23L, Added extra cup of sugar at fermenting stage to have a higher OG reading. OG: 1.040

25-10-2013: 30gm Spoon Wakatu hops added. Boiled 1Cup water in pot and let sit for 10 minutes then added to the brew

2/11/2013 Bottled, FG 1.008, 1.25L bottles with 1.35tsp sugar

Brewing temperature was not controlled but the room was fluctuating from 18degrees C to 22degrees C.

I did not want to be too specific as I wanted to know if this applies to other beer types

  • have you bottled this lager already? if not, what are you basing it seeming 'to have less carbonation' than normal on? – dax Nov 17 '13 at 10:31
  • more details please - such as how/when did you add the hops and the priming sugar and how much of each? – mdma Nov 17 '13 at 13:50
  • Added the brewing details – WillNZ Nov 17 '13 at 19:56
  • What temperature was it fermented at? – Denny Conn Nov 17 '13 at 20:19
  • Roughly between 18-22degrees C. Temperature was not controlled unfortunately – WillNZ Nov 17 '13 at 20:26

No, dry hopping has no effect on carbonation. It does increase foam retention because the hops bind the proteins in the beer to increase foam production and retention. You should calculate the amount of priming sugar based on the volumes of CO2 you want and the temperature of the beer. Since it's a lager, you've likely been fermenting it cold (if you've done a true lager). That means you'll need to reduce the amount of priming sugar you use. You can use a calculator like this one http://tastybrew.com/calculators/priming.html to figure that out.

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Measuring out individual bottles can itself lead to inconsistency - it's hard by eye to measure .35 tsp. It's best to boil all the priming sugar for your batch in water, let it cool a little and add that to the bottling bucket as it fills with beer from the fermentor. I imagine that's more likely the cause of the inconsistency, or if fermentation temperatures were different and you ended up with less residual CO2 from fermentation.

The only way I could think that dry hopping would affect carbonation is if you did it in a keg, and the hops absorbed some of the sugar solution, since they take around 5 times their own weight in liquid.

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  • I know it is hard to measure out .35 tsp but unfortunately I currently don't have a bottling bucket. Is it possible to use the same method above and adding straight to the fermenter just before you bottle? I am guessing that this will stir up the bottom though. – WillNZ Nov 18 '13 at 19:48
  • Yes, it's possible, but I don't know anyone that does it. Either the sugar will get stuck with the trub or you'll disturb the sediment swirlling the sugar into the the top half. – mdma Nov 18 '13 at 21:04
  • If you use carbonation drops, you won't need to add anything to the fermenter, but they are a bit pricey for an entire 5gal batch. – Wyrmwood Nov 19 '13 at 21:22
  • @willnz I have mixed my priming syrup right into the primary lots of times, I usually do it 30 min before bottle so it has a while to resettle. – Grady Player Nov 20 '13 at 5:37
  • @GradyPlayer does it have any affect on the clarity of the beer or the amount of sediment in the bottles compared to putting the sugar straight into the bottles? – WillNZ Nov 20 '13 at 7:35

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