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Bucktown’s Standalone Cat Cafe Could Get Its Cats Next Week

However, the city is taking its sweet time

The cats arrive next week at the Windy Kitty Cafe and Lounge.
Ashok Selvam is the editor of Eater Chicago and a native Chicagoan armed with more than two decades of award-winning journalism. Now covering the world of restaurants and food, his nut graphs are super nutty.

City Hall is snarling the opening process for Bucktown’s cat cafe, yet ownership hopes that the cats will arrive next week. In good news, construction on The Windy Kitty Cafe and Lounge should finish on Wednesday, according to co-owner Jenny Tiner. As they wait for city officials to review applications, the owners still hope to open at the end of the month at 1746 W. North Avenue.

Cat cafes are a new frontier for the city, and that’s why city officials are taking their time to approve it. Tiner hasn’t set an opening date, as workers are putting the final touches on the space and the menu. They still need to furnish the place. Windy Kitty is working with Alive One rescue shelter.

This isn’t Chicago’s first cat cafe, a place to drink coffee and eat snacks in the company of rescue animals. There’s also a cafe inside the Tree House Humane Society. But Windy Kitty will be the first in Chicago to be standalone and serve food. Stay tuned for more details.

The city’s new cat cafe category of licensing prevents applicants from serving food. The first and only recipient of the license, The Catcade, can only serve drinks, according to co-founder Shelly Casey. The Lakeview venue mixes vintage video games with cats. It opened in August.