Best Breakfast Places in the Upper Thumb

The Upper Thumb is blessed with sandy beaches, fun places to visit and great inexpensive places to eat. We compiled a listing of the top restaurants, grills, bakeries, and bars that offer breakfast. These are the top rated places to go for your morning meal according to the travel sites Yelp and TripAdvisor.

We’ve personally been to most of these fine establishments to start the day and they are all worth visiting for your morning wake up. We combined ratings (Knot Ratings) and ranked all the top spots here.

brew-moonBrew Moon – Caseville – Coffee, and pastries. A true coffee bar. Not a full breakfast menu but high-quality pastry and nibbles. Hint: Visit the gift shop and bring your laptop. Great place to chill and do a little work on their wifi before you hit the beach.

Open during the summer season – 9 ½ knots


Murphy’s Bakery – Bad Axe – Bakery – A classic bakery and coffee shop that has been around for years. Is an actual commercial bakery and you will find Murphy’s Bakery items throughout the thumb. One of their best is the English muffin bread.

9 1/2 knots


Walt’s Restaurant Caseville – Eggs and Omelets – This is considered one of the top breakfast places in the Thumb. The servers come with an attitude that can come off as snarky but is good-natured. Offers good American style breakfast with homemade bread and jams. Hint: Cash Only and ifs its super busy you may be asked to sit with others, which has turned out fun and interesting.

8 knots


The Stock Pot – Port Austin – Considered one of the top cafes at the tip of the Thumb. Super fast service and large portions. A great value.  Hint: Cash Only

8 knots


Wooded Island Sports Grill – Caseville –Wooded Isle is a relative newcomer and touts itself as a sports bar. However, it offers a full breakfast menu with daily specials. Hint: Try  Sunflower Seed Bread and homemade corned beef hash.

8 knots


Franklin Inn – Bad Axe – Hotel restaurant. Business travelers and those workers who are putting up the hundreds of wind turbines in the thumb swear by this place. It’s known for a fine buffet breakfast.

8 knots


Varney’s Coney Island Café – Harbor Beach – Large portions and near the harbor. Staunchly loved by the locals.  If you’re a sailor in the harbor it’s a short walk to breakfast.

7 ½ knots


The Lighthouse Café – Port Austin  – This place is across the street from the farmers market and a short walk from the harbor so it’s packed on the weekends. Hint: The home fries and homemade bread and sausage are worth the wait on Saturday morning

7 ½ knots


Main Street Cafe & Bakery – Pigeon – Move away from the shore and it gets real. Rub elbows with locals and the farmers who frequent this cafe for their early morning coffee. Full breakfast menu. Specialty is the pecan tarts Hint: Sunday Brunch Buffet is highly popular

7 ½ knots

Shelly's Bar & Grill


Shelly’s Bar and Grill – Grindstone City – Bar with a full breakfast menu. Awesome. This place supports many of the local teams and you can usually find entire families stopping by.

7 ½ knots



Al’s Restaurant & Bakery – Harbor Beach – Considered one of the finest places on the east side of the thumb. Country cooking with traditional American breakfast fare.

7 ½ knots

Peppermill Restaurant – Bad Axe – Traditional Family Style restaurant. Huge local following. A place to see and be seen in Bad Axe.  Editor’s note: Their website seems to be in the process of being edited.

7 knots

The Lamplighter – Sebewaing – Omelets are the specialty and they are served all day. Sunday breakfast buffet.

7 knots


Lefty’s Diner– Caseville – A busy tribute to the 1950’s. Lefty’s has an original soda fountain bar and a drive in awning that is not in use.  Good for traditional breakfasts and lunches.

6 ½ knots

Williams Inn – Harbor Beach – Breakfast Buffet – Their breakfast buffet is inexpensive but raters caution you to get what you pay for.

6 knots


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