Brewery cookbook features pairing made in Lincoln

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) – For two Lincoln staples in the food and drink scene, a new cookbook is going to mark their first time being published.

The Craft Brewery Cookbook features more than 70 recipes and beer pairings from chefs and brewers across the US, following a growing trend of pairing foods with other beverages than wine.

“So each recipe in the book is not necessarily put with a specific beer, but a style of beer,” said Sam Riggins with Cosmic Eye Brewing in Lincoln.

Riggins said once he heard about the project from the author he reached out to local chef Mike Vandenberg, who works just up the street from him, to create the dish: a spicy shrimp cocktail.

“Presentation is huge, especially when people are flipping through a cookbook and they see the pictures and whatever catches their eye is probably what gonna stand out and something that they’re more interested in,” Vandenberg said. “With this dish specifically the colors really speak for themselves, it’s very red base and we usually garnish it with the very white shrimp and very green avocados.”

The author of the cookbook, John Holl, cooked and plated each dish himself and also paired everything in the book with beers. Riggins said he had been toying around with a few different brew ideas.

“When we originally sent this off the inspiration for this recipe was our Dead Man’s Run beer, which we make Bloody Mary beers with. Kind of inspiration for our Bloody Mary mix comes from Mexican-style shrimp cocktails,” Riggins said. “It just so happened that John had a lot of our beers that he was sampling and reviewing at the time and when he made the dish at his house he liked how it paired with our sour beers instead, so that’s what’s featured in the book. ”

This is both men’s first time seeing their work published and both said it’s hard to put seeing it on the page for the first time into words.

“Very flattering and very humbled to be a part of this and it feels pretty good to be in a book,” Vandenberg said.

“When something nationally and big like this comes along and they want you to be a part of it, it’s really flattering, and it’s really cool especially when one of your friends can be in it,” Riggins said.

The book will be released Tuesday, it’ll be available at many nationwide retailers like Target and Amazon. To celebrate the duo is hosting a food and beer pairing event this Saturday. Guests who buy a ticket will get to sample the dish and the beer suggested pairing with it.

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