Bodega cats may get all the Instagram love, but they aren’t the only hard-working felines in this town.
Distillery (and brewery) cats — like Gangsta Cat of Gowanus’ Other Half Brewing Co. — do their part to keep mice in check and entertain customers at the city’s craft spirit businesses, as Brooklyn writer Brad Thomas Parsons knows better than anyone.
His new book, a New York Times stocking stuffer selection, collects the “stats” and backstories of 30 such industrious cats from around the country.
Parsons, 48, says he first envisioned “Distillery Cats: Profiles in Courage of the World’s Most Spirited Mousers” as a series of painted, vintage baseball cards not for athletes but for felines.
Each “card” includes a portrait by illustrator Julia Kuo, the name of the distillery or brewery they work for, a few quick facts (like their official job title, their superpower and their favorite human body part), and a biography.
The author, whose previous books detailed the history of bitters and amaro, has dedicated this latest title to his tabby friend and roommate: “I joke that … [like] very serious actors that suddenly do a voiceover for Pixar movie, and say, ‘This one is for my kids,’ I say, ‘This one is for Louis.’”
Was Louis, we asked, ever jealous of the subjects Parsons profiled in “Distillery Cats”?
He remained his “usual semi-aloof self,” reports the Carroll Gardens resident, who did take pains to wash his hands after “interviews.”
Below, Parsons talks with us about three felines he met (and pet), all of whom earned their mousing stripes in New York City: