Weekend what we’re reading: Cat Cafe, AirBnB startup, classic French meals


This weekend we take a look at the possibility of a cat cafe in San Francisco, the travails of starting Airbnb.com and a simplified French cooking piece.

OMG, San Francisco is getting a cat cafe, maybe

Now I have heard it all, a cat cafe. I didn’t even know that cats drank coffee! Heck, I lived with a pair of Siamese cats for years and not one demanded coffee in the morning. Well, maybe this cafe will serve tea, but I never have seen a cat drinking tea. That being said, a new cafe called KitTea is opening in San Francisco.

Plus, have you ever seen two strange cats purring peacefully together after just meeting?

SFist says the founders (both from the tech world) want to create a space that’s “part ‘gourmet tea house’ and part ‘cat and human oasis,'” where people can “interact with cats and other cat enthusiasts.” They plan to adopt from local shelters, and will cap the number of cats present at any time at 10.

The goal is to open in 2014, though the founders are still searching for space: “We are hoping to lease a minimum of 1,600 square feet, this would allow 30-35 people in the cat space at a time, the space will never be crowded, or chaotic.” There will also be a cats-only room for the feline entertainment to retreat to — maybe that’s where they’ll stash the litterboxes to avoid trouble with the health inspector?

Brian Chesky: The ‘Sharing Economy’ and its enemies

The Wall Street Journal interviews the founder of Airbnb.com, who discusses their successes and the problems with forces against the “sharing ecomony.” As you can imagine, hotels are not too pleased with this new form of competition. At the rate this upstart website is growing, it may have booked more overnights than Hilton and the Intercontinental chains by the end of this year. The story is fascinating.

The jobless designers were aware that within two weeks the 2007 Industrial Design Society of America conference was being held in San Francisco and that hotel rooms would be scarce. Mr. Gebbia had three air mattresses and suggested turning the apartment into an “air bed and breakfast.”

Within three days, they had a rudimentary website up and booked three guests: a 35-year-old woman, a 30-year-old from India, and a 45-year-old father of five, each paying about $70 a night for several nights. “I thought we were going to get a bunch of young L.A. dudes, 23-year-olds,” Mr. Chesky recalls. No matter. That month’s rent problem was solved, and Messrs. Chesky and Gebbia thought they might be on to something.

44 classic French meals you need to try before you die

For those of us who are not terribly astute at conjuring the best from cookbooks, this piece provides beautiful pictures to go with the meals suggested. Let’s call it a version of French Cooking 1.0. Recipes are included as well.

Baked Camembert — It is a Camembert. And it is BAKED. What more do you need to know?

Bouillabaisse — This saffron-flavored stew is the most iconic dish from Marseille and it shares the warmth of the city. It involves four different types of fish and a variety of shellfish. It’s a classic that will be appreciated by all seafood lovers.

Boeuf Bourguignon — Its name may be hard to pronounce but boeuf bourguignon is always easy to eat. It is basically a delicious red wine beef stew. It is also one of the rare dishes that is even better the second day. So if you’re hosting a dinner and want to cook in advance, this is a perfect option.

(Photo: kevind ooley/Flickr Creative Commons)

  • Marilyn

    I understand the cat cafes have been done in Japan though I have never been there to see one. I did have a cat years ago who drank coffee. I never deliberately gave her that to drink, but if i left my coffee cup unattended, she would hop up on the table and drink from it. If it was too low in the cup for her to get her head into, she would dip a paw in and then lick the coffee off her paw. Coffee, popcorn, and potato chips were the things she would go nuts for.

  • http://tsanewsblog.com/214/news/history-repeats-itself-with-tsas-strip-search-tactics/ Lisa Simeone

    Our local Ace Hardware has a kitty. He’s a gorgeous orange and white tabby named Ben. They adopted him from a shelter. Almost everyone who comes in the store greets him and pets him. He has one of those high carpeted perches by the window where he can curl up and get away from it all when he’s not in the mood for attention.