Uncle Wolfie's Breakfast Tavern
Daytime-only tavern serving hearty breakfast
Milwaukeeans do everything in bars, from socialize to yoga, so when a tavern appeared that's only open until 3pm, everyone thought, "yeah, cool, I'm down." Uncle Wolfie's is in a beautiful former Miller tied house, so it just makes sense to keep its tavern history alive, whether it's open until bartime or not. The menu is half-breakfast and half-lunch, and you can put an egg on anything you want, like the Millee cheese steak with beer cheese sauce. A pulled pork tostada with coffee-rubbed pork shoulder counts as breakfast here, as do the cornmeal johnny cakes.
Birch + Butcher
Modern restaurant with adjoining butcher and cafe
The latest hipster hangout is in one of the new North End buildings along the river just north of downtown. Birch + Butcher is a restaurant, and as the name implies, a butcher shop/deli/cafe combo. On Sundays, the space becomes an inviting spot for a cozy, meat-heavy brunch; hot ham and rolls are a local tradition, but you can try something a little more hearty like the cassoulet with duck, pork, poached egg, and chicken liver mousse. Avocado toast gets a boost from red beets and caraway, while waffles go upscale with trout roe and crème fraîche.
Comfort food with lots of vegan options
It's hard to get more classic East Side than Comet Cafe, the place where everyone goes both late night and (sorta) early morning for hardcore comfort food. There's a bar/diner counter, but the cozy booths are always filled first. On Instagram, you'll find lots of pictures of the Stendler, a breakfast burrito that comes with a surprise Sriracha message written on top. But don’t ignore the bacon strips cooked into pancakes or the fried chicken in a biscuit with collard greens, bacon, cheese, and sausage gravy. Many options are vegan, so even your hippy friend will be happy here.