Sip & Purr - Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Milwaukee, Wisconsin is a place that I feel like it's undervalued. It's one of the most amazing cities I've been to. It has the most to offer. - Danny Gokey
Chicago has always had a way of stealing the collective Midwestern cities' thunder. When someone even considers traveling to the Midwest, 90% of the time (probably higher than that actually) the destination is usually Chicago. The remaining awesome cities like Indianapolis, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Detroit, Indianapolis (oops, did I put that twice?), etc. are completely overlooked and overshadowed by the Skydeck at Willis Tower - which is cool, I mean, if you like traveling hours away to take long elevator rides to the tops of buildings to look out at other buildings. I've been on the Skydeck, but do you want to know what's even more thrilling than walking on glass 1,353 feet in the air? Playing with some cats born and raised in the Cheese State that is Wisconsin.
A week before the 4th of July, I was glancing at my Outlook calendar to see what I had coming up and noticed my office was closed on Friday, July 3. How did I not know this? I don't know! I honestly don't know, but I had a freak out moment and started researching obsessively to figure out a last-minute trip. My husband and I have been riding the tiki bar wave for many months now which has caused me to grossly overlook my quest for cat cafes - the original inspiration for this blog. I needed to get back in touch with my alter ego, the Crazy Cat Cafe Girl, and in my frantic Googling, I discovered there was a cat cafe in Milwaukee that I hadn't been to. I've also never been to Wisconsin, so the decision was made in about 20 minutes and the following Friday, we packed the car and began our first Great American road trip of 2020.
Sip & Purr is located in the trendy Murray Hill neighborhood of MKE. Before my reservation at Sip & Purr, I enjoyed a refreshing pint of Home from Good City Brewing and ate my first Wisconsin cheese curds (which are freaking fantastic). After my beer, I stumbled upon Black Cat Alley which is an outdoor art gallery in an alley of various murals, including, of course, cats. After I got my photos for the Gram, I walked around the corner to Sip & Purr to revive my quest and added cat cafe #24 to the list!
|Posing in Black Cat Alley|
When I walked into Sip & Purr, my eyes immediately fixated on the letters on the back wall respectfully instructing me to "Eat. Drink. Pet Cats." I knew then that I was with my kind of people. Glancing around, Sip & Purr is separated by a glass wall into two sections - cat room and cafe. I love when cat cafes build their space like this for a few reasons. First, some people are allergic to cats, but really like cats, so they're able to sip some coffee, check out kitties (from a distance), continue breathing and leave with a full heart. Second, people can utilize the cafe space to do work, homework, study, etc. and take breaks to peek in at the precious felines in the next room. Third, the cat cafe can profit on cat hating coffee lovers for the win-win! P.S. I ordered an iced chai tea latte that was quite tasty.
|The cafe side|
|Looking from the cafe side to where the cat room is|
|Looking into the cat room with my tasty chai|
The cat room is a shotgun style space that offers several places for cat lovers to sit and play with kitties. Cat carriers are randomly placed around the room which held sleeping cats and offers an escape and solitude when the cats have had enough of people. My reservation was at 2PM (aka kitty nap time), so only about four of the dozen or so cats were out and willing to play with me.
|Definitely didn't want my attention|
|Definitely didn't care about my attention|
I mention this next part only because it's contrary to what you would think, but the space didn't smell like cats or dirty litterbox. The room was nicely aired out or maybe it was my face mask that was filtering the smell...
I was pleased to find out that Sip & Purr does allow you pick up certain cats and, to my delight, the cutest little softie in the room was on the list to be scooped up by me for some love and she welcomed it.
|The Cutest Little Softie|
This was the first cat cafe I've been to that had pop punk music playing on the speakers and this only made me happier. I was in a room full of cats with the songs of Simple Plan, +44 and Yellowcard serenading me. It was definitely a "life is good" moment for me.
Since the majority of cats were sleeping, I ended up leaving my reservation about 15 minutes early. On my way out, a quote from Hannah Shaw "The Kitten Lady" was on the wall stating - "Goodbye is the goal..." I'm not really sure what this meant, so if you have any ideas, please drop them in the comments below. The only thing I could come up with is that you see the quote on the way out as you're saying goodbye, so goodbye is the goal...? I have no clue.
If you ever commit to thinking outside the box and visit a city in the Midwest (that's not Chicago), add Milwaukee to your list. It's easy to get around and has great tiki bars, clean beaches, delicious beer, amazing cheese curds, beautiful lighthouses, a 1964 lounge and a cute little cat cafe. Do I plan on heading back once COVID is over? You betcha! I still need to take one of MKE's many brewery tours and check in on my cheese head cat friends. Mkay.
Sip & Purr is located at 2021 E. Ivanhoe Place, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202.
Reservations are not required, but recommended. www.sipandpurr.com