Fionnán O’Connor announces second Irish whiskey book, Créatúr
Fionnán’s first book, A Glass Apart, is widely recognised as “The most comprehensive guide to Irish whiskey" (The Irish Times). Scheduled for publication in 2026, this second book has been almost 10 years in the planning. Put on the back burner by various other projects, not least his five-year PhD dissertation into lost Irish mashbills, Créatúr is titled after one of Ireland’s more peculiar words for whiskey.
Featuring photography by Marcus Lynam, Créatúr is a book about whiskey and the people who make it. It is about 'the creature' as a creature: made from raw materials, distilled by real people.
Fionnán said: “Créatúr is part love letter, part ill-equipped guerrilla reading circle for the ransom of the soul of distilling in Ireland. Tracing the history of the Irish distilling tradition from its earliest primary manuscripts through the mashbills and procedures of closed Victorian distilleries to lost words for oaten poitín in the Donegal Rosses to classic 1960s bottlings to the inspiring distillers, bonders, blenders and bar-folk reshaping Irish drinks and spirits culture today.”
He added: “Along the way, we’ll be talking to some wonderful friends doing things that I admire, as well as with some folks who don’t always get a look-in: barley farmers, publicans, tillage researchers, ethnomusicologists, lab analysts, mixologists, folklorists, a Phylloxera historian, a peatland scientist, Willie Murphy, all sorts… Ultimately, Créatúr is a little bit fluid and hopefully no less pungent for it either.”
To fund the creation of the book, Fionnán and Marcus are asking whisky lovers to join a support community of 400 who will, amongst other things, enjoy a one-off cask share of Irish single pot still whiskey.
The fundraising window will open at creatur.ie on October 31st at 20:00 IST/GMT.
Créatúr's Fundraising Community & Cask Share
For a contribution of 250 euro, supporters will receive:
A calendar of quarterly online chats and in-person educational events called 'The Poor Creature Hedge School', chatting with distiller friends through some of the most niche and unmarketable whiskey topics on the internet. Due to the unhelpful laws of physics, the in-person events will be subject to capacity and ticketed at a nominal running cost on a first come first serve basis. They will all be in Ireland.
A copy of Créatúr signed and editioned by the author, with your name included (if you want) as a supporter.
One 500ml cask strength bottle of An Créatúr Bocht (The Poor Creature), a single cask, single pot still whiskey triple distilled by Boann Distillery from 40% Malt, 40% Raw Barley, 15% Oats, and 5% rye, left to rest in an Oloroso sherry hogshead. Bonded and bottled by Two Stacks. It was distilled as part of Fionnán’s PhD research into lost Irish mash bills, from a 1940s ledger he uncovered in the Locke’s Collection of the National Library of Ireland. In homage to a classic age statement among Irish Pot Still whiskeys of the 1940s, it will be bottled as a seven-year-old. It will only ever be sold as a constituent part of the Créatúr book fundraiser.