Comic book lovers, bookstore lovers, or just those who appreciate thoughtful spaces: AlleyCat Comics will undoubtedly warm your heart.
In Chicago, alleys run between each street like a common driveway that lets out at the end of the block. They offer an endless network of shortcuts around city traffic, but they’re also where you’ll find rows of old “coach houses,” modernly referred to as garages, tucked behind the street-facing buildings.
When you’re strolling N. Clark Street in Andersonville, plenty of eye-catching shops and restaurants might distract you from the vertical sign reading “AlleyCat Comics” gracing a two-foot wide walkway between a deli and a coffee shop. However, sonter 15 feet down the length of this walk space and you’ll discover a patio with cafe tables and vintage string lights in front of a little brick building (yes, an old coach house) converted into a colorful wonderland in print. Inside you’ll find any comic book or graphic novel printed in the last century. As much as the books, I love the space-warm brick walls, exposed ceiling beams and skylight overhead. If you’re not a comic book fanatic, there’s still plenty to enjoy if you like illustration, design, or you’re just a Virgo who loves the smell of paper. AlleyCat is a secret gem with a speakeasy meets bookstore feel.
Look for the vertical “AlleyCat Comics” sign (red letters) peeking out from the side of the first building located on the northwest corner of Berwyn Avenue and N. Clark Street.