Cat fanatics now have a haven to satisfy all of their furry feline needs. Purrfect Café and Gallery on Hertel opened up on August 18th and within the next 6-8 weeks, the restaurant side will be up and running. Purrfect is exactly what it sounds like, a café where you can sit and play with cats. The walls of the gallery are adorned with locally sourced cat and Buffalo-themed artwork.
Owner Jessica Brandon was inspired to open her own cat café after visiting one during her trip to Scotland. After being diagnosed with cancer, she set money aside to open up her own business but wanted to travel before that. “I was actually thinking about opening up a dog daycare. I love all animals,” she said.
But upon taking an outside break from a bar she was at in Scotland, and stumbling upon a large window with five cats sitting in it, she knew she had to bring this idea to Buffalo. “I visited the cat café in Scotland three more times, and then every city I went to from there on out, I would visit cat cafés if they had one. I went to about a dozen of them,” she said.
Brandon stated she knew the cat café was meant to be. She only lives a few blocks away from her café, a place that was once used as a storage space. Upon returning to the 716, she noticed a “For Rent” sign in the window. The rest is history.
Four of the cats at Purrfect are “permanent residents” – one being a rescue cat that Brandon found abandoned, pregnant, and covered in ticks at The Reservation. After shaving the cat, she realized she was pregnant. She had four kittens that now live at the café.
Although the cats are permanently living at the café, Brandon stated she does bring them home for a week at a time so they don’t get overwhelmed at the café. The rest of the cats are adoptable cats from Ten Lives Club, a cat rescue and adoption group.
In the two months since being opened, Purrfect has already had eight adoptions.
Once the restaurant side opens, they will be offering American café bistro style options such as soup, salads, paninis, flatbreads, and dessert options. Brandon’s partner and fiancé, Ryan Walser will be the head cook. Baked goods will be outsourced from Blackbird Sweets, located just down the street. Coffee and tea will also be available for purchase, and there will be brunch on Sundays.
The café sells cat hammocks, locally sourced jewelry, crocheted cat-butt coasters, cat toys, as well as “Purrfect merch”. There will also we pink Purrfect shirts for sale for breast cancer awareness. “Two dollars from every sale of or pink shirts are gong towards the Breast Cancer Research Foundation,” Brandon said.
Fifteen people are the maximum for the café. It is $8 an hour per person to hang out with cuddly cats. They offer a “Nappy Hour” special from 3pm-5pm, Tuesday through Friday for $5. During the holidays, they will be doing a special discount for college students. With valid college ID, a student can play and pet cats for the Nappy Hour price.
Tonight, there will be the second-ever cat yoga! Cat yoga happens once a week, each day varying. Brandon said it is usually Tuesday, Wednesday, or Sunday at 6pm. “The cats enjoyed it. They were all over everyone,” Brandon said.
The cat café has something to offer for all patrons, whether you’re a cat lover or just getting used to cats, stop on by 1507-1509 Hertel Avenue to cuddle with fur babies and learn more about the café!
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