Tiki Cat

Tiki Cat – Kansas City, Missouri

There are few places I actually fantasize about visiting, but Tiki Cat was one of them. They were featured in House of Tabu Exotica Moderne magazine and the highball zombie glass is one of my favorites. Today I heard the news I fear is just the beginning of many great places I will never get to visit due to the global pandemic…

From the Tiki Cat Facebook page announced: After extensive negotiations with the landlord, we were not able to come to a mutual agreement on the terms of our lease. TikiCat will not be reopening in its current location. We hope to find a new location and reopen at some point in the future, although the timing is uncertain. Until then, we will keep our amazing customers and employees in our thoughts and in our hearts. Without them, TikiCat would never have become such a special place. Hopefully, we can resurrect it someday in a new space, under different circumstances.

This is a shame, I never been here but it was most certainly on my top 3 tiki bars to visit. It got a very high rating on Critiki.com and it was a favorite of one of my favorite podcasts by Darrell Brogdon of Kansas Public Radio’s Retro Cocktail Hour (KPR.ORG).  Here is the description from Critiki:

TikiCat is a tiki bar in Kansas City, Missouri, it opened on April 13, 2017. The bar is part of the HopCat group, a chain of beer-focused pubs around the midwest. The focus here is pure tiki, not beer, and the group has enlisted the help of a number of noted specialists and artists: the buildout is by Bamboo Ben; Martin Cate has helped with the cocktail program; there are carvings by Dave Hansen (Lake Tiki), Patrick Sousa (OB Tiki), Ken Pleasant, and Jason Joffe (Smokin’ Tikis); tiki mug and menu design by Anthony Carpenter; lamps by Jason Shelfow (Tiki J’s Custom Lamps); and art by Thor Thordarson.
There is a vintage Witco bar and stools, and vintage furniture for seating. There are some intimate hut areas for groups, and table seating. The space is richly decorated, with carvings, art, bamboo, thatch, matting, and faux foliage throughout.
I don’t now why the landlord could come to an agreement, I hesitate to speculate, but I fear it simply all boils down to money.  The landlord probably would have collected more from disaster relief than if he had renewed the lease. I hope I am wrong and welcome both sides to email me at TikiTriangle@aol.com – whatever the case, this was a true gem and its a shame its fallen victim to the circumstances of this difficult time.  Even in the best of times, its hard for places like this to exist, which is why this subculture of Tiki and Polynesian Pop is always at risk of decline once again.