LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- At the World of Beer, TC Acklin is an explorer. The Columbus of cold ones, the Magellan of malts. Now he's exploring a new frontier: printing pictures on pints.

The Louisville bar is the only place in town with the Ripples machine, combining 3-D and ink-jet printing technology to create an image on beer foam.

"Once one person sees it, they're like 'how do I get that on my beer, what do I need to order'," said general manager Bryan Norman.

Just order a beer and with the push of a button and customers get a piece of drinkable art. "Anywhere from stunned silence to hooping and hollering, calling their buddies. It's been really fun," said Acklin, who is the bar's assistant general manager.

Originally, the machine was used as a way to make latte art using a coffee extract as the edible ink. Now it's bye-bye baristas, hello bartenders.

"They developed their own malt extract, so we're able to print on the head of a beer and basically do any image we could possibly think of," said Acklin.

Any image, logo, or phrase is doable. Just upload a file to the Ripples app directly from your phone's camera roll and the machine does all the work. "Any beer that we pour from a nitro line, just the way the head holds on that beer, it sustains the image better and prints a little cleaner," said Acklin.

The printing takes a matter of seconds.

"A gentleman had me put his baby on the top of his beer," said Norman.

"'Will you be my Valentine' to 'did it hurt when you dropped from heaven,' and leaving that on a table and the customer reaction, they get such a kick out of it," said Acklin.

In just a matter of weeks, the bar's printed hundreds of images. "First thing that happens is the phones come out, the pictures are taken. And whether it's going to social media, texted or emailed it's happening," said Norman.

It's creating plenty of buzz online, a new kind of marketing, straight from the tap to your favorite app. "All of a sudden it's just a string of comments, tagging friends, tagging friends," said Acklin.

That's driving people through the door at World of Beer. "That's kind of the idea. Hey we've got to go to World of Beer and check this out," said Norman.

Just when you thought your favorite brew couldn't get any better.

World of Beer is located at 9850 Von Allmen Ct #108, Louisville, KY 40241

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