Lonely Planet Writer

Sip an adorable Hello Kitty cocktail at this new café in California

An adorable new café is opening in California where visitors can raise a cocktail or an afternoon tea to the beloved Japanese cartoon character Hello Kitty.

Sip an adorable cocktail at the new cafe. Image by Jakob Layman/Sanrio

The Hello Kitty Grand Café in Irvine, California – a city in Orange County an hour from LA – is set to open on 14 September, and will be the first and only permanent café in the US that features a public café and a private room for reservation-only afternoon tea program and cocktail service.

The adorable new cafe. Image by Jakob Layman/Sanrio

Located in the Irvine Spectrum Center, the new café will offer up some seriously sweet treats, like made-to-order mini hot donuts in flavours like cinnamon sugar and cookies n’ cream, and mini-cakes featuring Sanrio characters. Inside, the café is lined with one-of-a-kind artworks and Hello Kitty icons, but there’s another amazing surprise hidden away inside: the Bow Room at Hello Kitty Grand Café is a hidden, reservation-only spot serving up afternoon tea and evening cocktails.

There will be plenty of cute treats at tea. Image by Jakob Layman/Sanrio

The afternoon tea service costs $55 per person and features plenty of afternoon snacks like fresh seasonal fruit, cucumber and dill or egg sandwiches, as well as some decidedly sugary additions like mini cupcakes, Hello Kitty mini-cakes, raspberry macaron, and chocolate cake.

Saddle up to a Hello Kitty bar. Image by Jakob Layman/Sanrio

For adults who still love the adorable character, there’s a cocktail bar for those 21 and older beginning at 5 pm, from Wednesday to Sunday. The reservation-only cocktail service will feature grown-up drinks with a Hello Kitty twist, like You Had Me at Hello (cachaca, aperol, lemon, sherry and pineapple); Matcha Matcha (Japanese whiskey, yogurt, matcha, yuzu); Dear Daniel (mezcal, pineapple, lime, spirulina, salted coconut whip); and 1974 (choice of an old-fashioned or classic negroni served with a Hello Kitty ice cube).

Sample a collection of very colourful drinks. Image by Jakob Layman/Sanrio

If you want to get your hands on one of those adorable cocktails, you can make a reservation online here.