Originally Posted by lmarkis
This is a great discussion so I don't want to take it into a different direction, but I do want to ask those who bottle condition their beer.
I have read that the normal amount of corn sugar to use for carbonation is either 2/3, 3/4, and some even use 1 cup per 5 gallons. What do you normally use?
I ask because I have an Irish Blonde Ale and I feel it's not carbonated enough: I used 2/3 cup corn sugar for 5 gallons. I previously made an Irish Red Ale using 3/4 cup of corn sugar and the carbonation/head is wonderful, but these things are really lacking in the blonde ale. You were all talking about adding yeast to your beers when adding gelatin, what about adding a little bit more sugar to the beer bottles and recap? Will this help?
There are lots of threads about calculators for priming sugar. Here is one online calculator (http://hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/brew/widgets/bp.html
). When it asks for temperature, use the warmest temperature the beer was stored at, not the current temperature of the beer when bottling (cold conditioning, lagering, cold crashing).
Most would suggest measuring priming sugar by weight. One rule-of-thumb is a 1 oz of priming sugar per 1 gallon of finished beer (results in 2.7 vol CO2). The online calculator is good when you want to prime for more/less carbonation. Grams are nice to use for such fine measurments.
Adding more sugar to already primed beer is more dangerous than adding more yeast and recapping. If you're sure of the amount of sugar you added, then maybe the yeast haven't finished fermenting it. You could tip the bottles over and store warmer to see if they change. The problem is that volume measurements can be inaccurate for sugar. I'd just enjoy the Blonde the way it is and brew another batch and refine your techniques.
Brewing ingredients like carapils, wheat, flaked grains can help head/head retension more then just increasing carbonation.