Historian Fionnán O'Connor Announces New Book & Companion Whiskey

Historian Fionnán O'Connor Announces New Book & Companion Whiskey

Scheduled for publication in 2026, Créatúr will be the second book by Irish whiskey historian and A Glass Apart author Fionnán O’Connor, with photography by Marcus Lynam.

Titled after one of Ireland’s more peculiar words for whiskey, Créatúr (cray-toor) is a book about 'the creature' as a creature: made from raw materials, distilled by real people. And to fund its creation, we’re reaching out to real people in the whiskey world to join us in a support community and a one-off cask share of Irish single pot still whiskey.

Tracing the history of the Irish distilling tradition from its earliest primary manuscripts through the mash bills 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 now, Créatúr (if you haven’t guessed) is a book about whiskey and the people who make it. And the people who made it. And the making of it too.  

It’s a book about the way we drank and the ways we just might. It’s a deoch an dorais. Along the way, Fionnán be talking to some wonderful friends doing things that he admires, 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 book's creation, Fionnán is seeking to build a community of 400 supporters. Upon a contribution of 250 euro, Créatúr's supporters will receive:

  • In 2024-2025, a calendar of quarterly online chats and in-person educational events they're calling '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.
  • In 2026, a copy of Créatúr signed and editioned by the author, with your name included (if you want) as a supporter.
  • In 2028, 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 our friends at 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.

Registration for one of the 400 places opens on October 31st at 8pm Irish time here.

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