Paper Made from Beer?

About this time last year I managed to beg my way into an event a the Pink Palace Museum called The Science of Beer. My connection was a long shot but I had what I considered an interesting beer, science, and papermaking connection. I’m not sure how many guests shared my enthusiasm with this project but I had a great time regardless. Sharing your passion AND getting to taste lots of specialty brewed beers…how could you not have fun?

The project I shared at the event was my attempt at making paper from beer! Well, the grains used to make the beer, actually. With the help of Drew Matott of Peace Paper I successfully made a batch of paper made from the spent grain from the beer brewing process. I begged a friend of mine who is a home brewer to save his grain for me (I would include a link for him if he wasn’t such a recluse). After some trial and error and a hilarious bubble party resulting from an improperly prepared batch I managed to make quite a few sheets of beer grain paper. I think letterpress printing will not be an option for this paper, but we will do a test anyway. It is very…well…grainy and textured so printing on it could be difficult. Ideally this paper would make a fantastic invitation for a party, an interesting menu for a bar, or even as a label for your special bottles home brew.




  1. Ben Smith · December 29, 2015

    Gorgeous paper! Great idea for a beer list.


  2. Jennifer · June 24, 2017

    did you make it the same way you would if you were making it out of plant fibers?


    • instantkarmen · August 14, 2017

      I tried it that way (cooking the grain with soda ash then beating it) but didn’t have success. I then cooked it longer, added a little bit of abaca pulp to help bind it and it worked.
      For the next batch I made I simply froze the grain and then beat it after thawing. Freezing it caused the grain to expand and split, which essentially broke it down to the state I needed. I still had to add abaca pulp to help bind it though.


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