Have you ever been to a cat cafe? They’ve been around since the ’90s in Asia, and they’ve just recently started popping up around the U.S. They started as an alternative for people who wanted to own a cat or who loved cats but had apartments that wouldn’t allow pets. With cat cafes, people could still play with the cute critters, and as an added bonus, didn’t have to deal with the extra responsibility of caring for them day in and day out. At Meow Parlour, New York City’s first cat cafe, you can reserve time by the half hour or wait and see if you can walk-in, depending on any cancellations.
One of concerns that often comes up when I talk to people about cat cafes is if the food is actually served in the same space as where the cats are hanging out. I think we can all agree that having your food prepared where cats sleep and walk and play might be a little….gross. So no, at Meow Parlour you actually go around the corner to Meow Parlour Patisserie where you can sit and order food and drink and wait to be called into the main play area. What you can do, though, is bring your treats back with you to enjoy “in the company of a furry friend” as their website says.
Meow Parlour Patisserie has all the cutesy bites that seem fitting for an afternoon of lounging around with kitties. There are “munchies” like apple tarts and brownies, cookies like chocolate chip fleur de sel and peanut butter chocolate, and then—really the two highlights–cat-shaped cookies (available in different flavors like mint thin and rosemary and cornmeal with apricot jam) and cat-shaped macarons. Can anyone resist getting a cat-shaped treat while waiting for their go in Meow Parlour? I didn’t think so. Beverage-wise, there’s the famous Blue Bottle coffee, Harney & Sons tea, and Boylan soda along with lemonade and iced tea.
I ordered a party kitty macaron, a kitchen sink cookie, and some holiday tea. To my delight, the kitty macaron wasn’t just adorable but really tasty too. A place like this could totally get away with churning out gimmicky desserts; I think people would buy them even if they tasted like cardboard. But! I’m happy to say that it was a quality macaron, and that kitchen sink cookie was amazing itself. I’ll admit that I wasn’t expecting too much of the patisserie portion of Meow Parlour since it’s secondary to the actual cat cafe experience, but these were great snacks and I could see people stopping by here to eat even if they don’t have any intention of going to play with some cats.
And as if this whole experience couldn’t get any sweeter, Meow Parlour is partnered with KittyKind, a volunteer, no-kill rescue group, so all the cats you see and interact with are available for adoption. Can we all say a collective, “Awwwwww”?
Holiday tea, party kitty macaron, kitchen sink cookie
34 Ludlow St.
New York, NY 10002