The website of author and editor Clay Risen


Available now

Title: Single Malt: A Guide to the Whiskies of Scotland

Publisher: A Scott & Nix/Quercus Edition

Size: 5 x 9 inches

Pages: 328

ISBN: 978-1-681441-07-8

Price: $29.99

Advance acclaim

“Risen’s entries go deep, enabling readers to find the bottle that’s right for them or a friend...[r]egardless of where the whiskeys fall on the single malt spectrum, Risen and his tasting panel have created a definitive reference on the topic. This is a must-have guide for novices and aficionados alike.” —Publisher’s Weekly
(starred review)

Over the past five centuries, Scots have used malted barley, stills, and clear cold water to create a sublimely complex drink. More than 110 distilleries are active today in Scotland, bottling hundreds of single malt expressions for export all over the world. Now, from the author of the spirits bestseller American Whiskey, Bourbon & Rye, comes a new essential guide. Organized by distillery, each section features a profile of the maker and individual accounts of each core bottling, including information on age, proof, nose, body, palate, and price, plus an overall rating. The introduction provides a short history of the Scottish spirit, how it’s made, and how to enjoy it. Featuring more than 330 single malts, Risen has created the ideal companion for anyone who loves whisky and would like to know more. Slàinte!

Preorder now at the following ecommerce sites or at your favorite bookstore today!




Copies signed by the author available for preorder at



Over 100,000 copies sold!

Title: American Whisky, Bourbon & Rye: A Guide to the Nation's Favorite Spirit

Publisher: A Scott & Nix Edition/Sterling Epicure

Size: 5 x 9"

Pages: 392

ISBN: 978-1-4549-1688-8

Price: $24.95

Critical Acclaim

“A comprehensive and opinionated guide for the intermediate tippler…It’s a detailed, admirably cranky directory. Risen’s tasting notes for each are erudite
and fun.”—Wall Street Journal

“Risen is something of a Renaissance man…a Leonardo da Vinci of whiskey. American Whiskey, Bourbon & Rye…should have a proud place on the bookshelf (or by the bar) of anyone who is an enthusiast of bourbon and other American whiskeys. Very useful for shopping purposes…Bring this book with you.”—Los Angeles Review of Books

“Risen delicately walks readers into whiskey’s past, present, and future.…His words are meant for whiskey lovers, as he dissects every brand’s story and scores products on an NR (not recommended) to four-star scale. An American whiskey treasure worthy of four stars.”—Whisky Advocate

“A whiskey novice’s best friend...It’s a book I plan on keeping around for constant reference.”—Saveur

The bible of American whiskey has been updated. Organized in an A-to-Z directory by distillery or brand, this second edition features 338 whiskeys, including more than 145 new entries. Each section includes a brief history of the maker, along with its location, followed by a full account of each bottling, including details on age, proof, nose, color, body, palate, price, as well as an overall rating. A comprehensive primer provides a short history of the spirit, how it’s made, and how to enjoy it, including tips on organizing tasting sessions. Also included are a glossary of terms, a selection of top whiskeys by ratings and value, a handy checklist, and index. With this book, choosing from among the many whiskeys, bourbons, and ryes made in America has never been easier.





Clay Risen, the deputy op-ed editor at The New York Times, is the author of the forthcoming Single Malt: A Guide to the Whiskies of Scotland (October, 2018) and the spirits bestseller American Whiskey, Bourbon & Rye: A Guide to the Nation’s Favorite Spirit. Now in its sixth printing with more than 100,000 copies sold, his groundbreaking guide has quickly become the bible on American whiskey and placed Risen at the top of authorities on the history, business, and diversity of U.S. spirits. Risen has given numerous talks, appeared on television, and served as a judge on multiple spirit award committees. Risen has written widely about spirits for newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, Forbes, The Atlantic, and the Washington Post. He is the author of several popular American histories, including A Nation on Fire: America in the Wake of the King Assassination, The Bill of the Century: The Epic Battle for the Civil Rights Act, and the forthcoming The Crowded Hour: Teddy Roosevelt, the Rough Riders and the Dawn of the American Century. He grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, and now lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and two young children.