Rays of early April sunlight ricochet off Lake Michigan and illuminate the bright primary walls inside Suttons Bay’s Martha’s Leelanau Table. Chef Martha Ryan and her kitchen crew crack farm eggs into hot skillets and slide them, sunny-side up, onto wilted greens and sautéed shiitake mushrooms for the Jonesy’s Special or over Costa Rican–style black beans and rice scented with garlic and cumin. Applewood bacon sizzles on a flat-top griddle beside regimental links of local Pleva’s cherry pecan sausage.
Breakfast patrons looking to indulge a sweet-tooth tuck into fluffy blueberry flapjacks doused in Leelanau maple syrup or thick slices of Bay Bread’s cherry walnut loaf dipped in egg and rendered delicious as pain perdu. Foamy cappuccinos are assembled at a fragrant hissing espresso machine, and bottles of Mawby bubbles pop and froth in service of mimosas and brunch flutes.
Read on as we celebrate spring mornings in some of the North’s best breakfast nooks.
(All photos are at Martha’s Leelanau Table.)
Martha’s Leelanau Table
413 N St Joseph St, Suttons Bay | 231.271.2344
Martha’s has been a favorite spot for locals and visitors alike for almost a decade. The charming eatery serves made-from-scratch specialties with European accents, plus a full espresso bar, fine pastries, beer, wine and cocktails.
On the Road:
8654 South Maple City Road, Maple City | 231.228.6692
Embrace an a.m. spice kick with Pegtown’s hearty Southwestern Burrito stuffed with chorizo, scrambled eggs, peppers, onions, tomatoes and hot peppers.
The Redheads Cafe
202 West Main Street, Lake Leelanau | 231.256.7720
The hash-slinging ginger divas at Redheads draw breakfast crowds with proprietary creations like the Sassy Scram or their gluten-free, fruit-stuffed Perfect Pancakes.
237 Lake Avenue #200, Traverse City | 231.922.9645
Patisserie Amie feeds the need for rich, savory morning fare à la France with a raclette and mousse de foie–laced truffle omelet or bacon-and-onion-studded tarte flambée.
203 Cass Street, Traverse City | 231.929.0900
Chef Chris Hoffman’s unbridled pork evangelism extends to the breakfast table with his cajun-inspired Tasso Benedict and the Surf & Turf, TP’s pièce de résistance built with fried oyster, pork belly and poached eggs covered in red-hot vinaigrette and served over cornbread.
145 Ames Street, Elk Rapids | 231.498.2190
Reaching across the aisle between healthful and indulgent, The Local proffers housemade granola or avocado toast with egg whites for responsible types and fried chicken on a biscuit painted with black pepper sausage gravy for the carpe diem crowd.
Original Pancake House
4165 Main Street, Bay Harbor | 231.439.9989
Bay Harbor’s temple to the griddle cake specializes in overstuffed oven-baked creations like the Big Apple or the Dutch Baby with whipped butter, lemon and powdered sugar. Order them with ice cream if you’re feeling reckless.
Brutus Camp Deli
4086 US31 North, Brutus | 231.529.2222
Northern fortitude in the form of farm eggs, Plath’s smoked meats and planetary pancakes are available at this shrine to big food and taxidermy between Alanson and Pellston. Come hungry.