There’s no better way to set yourself up for a Christmas shopping trip or a winter walk than with a delicious, nutritious breakfast. Whether you like your eggs boiled or fried, your toast with marmalade or avocado, cruffins or cinnamon buns, there’s a place here to start the day right

Gail’s Wilmslow

Great British Life: Gail's Bakery. (c) Studio ATOF Gail's Bakery. (c) Studio ATOF

London’s decadent Gail’s Bakery, which started on Hampstead High Street and has gradually fanned out across the city, arrived in the north with this first outpost and it’s been a hit ever since, luring passers-by with its drool-worthy counter of goodies. There are flaky pain au chocolat with toasted almonds and muffins with thick chocolate chunks, gloopy chia bowls with fruit and plates of avocado on thick slices of its iconic sourdough with salsa verde. Add extra bacon or order one of the reversible chocolate cookies to dunk in your morning coffee, which, naturally, is rich and roasty. And with new outposts across Manchester and another in Altrincham, it’ll be even easier to hunt down its resplendent breakfasts before a bit of Christmas shopping.

The Flower Cup, Chester

Great British Life: The Flower Cup. (c) The Flower CupThe Flower Cup. (c) The Flower Cup

This popular spot on the historic Watergate Row level of shops trades in vibrant brunch-style dishes beneath trailing plants, green vines and swinging pendant lamps strung from the ceiling – think stacks of pancakes dripping in syrup, all-frills fry-ups, and smoked salmon and avo. Smooth coffee topped with intricate latte art is one of its trump cards, though there are plenty of teas, sourced from Holmes Chapel's Tea from the Manor. If you like your breakfasts sweet, go for the Biscoff French toast – a meltingly oozy pile of cinnamon French toast with Biscoff and chocolate ice cream. You might just need it to fuel a day’s shopping in Chester.

The Wizard Tearoom, Alderley Edge

Great British Life: The Wizard Tearoom. (c) The Wizard TearoomThe Wizard Tearoom. (c) The Wizard Tearoom

Beloved by walkers who stalk the paths of The Edge in the shadow of its forest canopies, this tucked-away outdoor tearoom can not only lay claim to some of the best coffee in Cheshire but also its legendary cinnamon buns, served warm from the oven. Piping hot breakfast baps with sausages and bacon from Waugh Brow Farm will set you up for a bracing walk through this enchanting rural idyll, filled with tiny trickling waterfalls and legends of knights and underground lairs. But if it’s too chilly to walk, drive back down the hill and into Alderley Edge for some well-heeled Christmas shopping.

Detaljer, Knutsford

Great British Life: Detljer. (c) Rachel MurphyDetljer. (c) Rachel Murphy

If you’re looking for something that swerves the greasy-spoon-style breakfasts, head to this Scandi lifestyle store in Knutsford. Here, Swedish native Caterine Hooper has created a light-filled space stacked with gorgeous prints, vases and crockery you’ll absolutely want to buy for your friends (and yourself). Warm up with a latte using beans from locally based Kickback Coffee and dunk in a pillowy cinnamon bun – for a moment, you might just believe you’re in Stockholm.

All Things Nice, Macclesfield

Great British Life: All Things Nice. (c) thesocialsistersgency / ATNAll Things Nice. (c) thesocialsistersgency / ATN

If you’ve never tried a cruffin, you’re seriously missing out on a breakfast of decadence. These irresistible hybrids of muffins and croissants were originally conceived by baker Kate Reid of Lune Croissanterie in Melbourne in 2013 and made popular by Mr. Holmes Bakehouse in San Francisco. Thankfully for us, they’ve firmly landed in Cheshire at All Things Nice Macclesfield, the bakery and deli on Chestergate that’s added another string to the town’s foodie bow since opening last year. Flavours of its legendary cruffins vary, from strawberry and lavender to pistachio with rose jam, pistachio cream custard and topped with rose meringue. Though if you’re keen for something slightly more salubrious, the kitchen cooks up excellent breakfast-style plates: potato cakes with poached eggs, confit tomato and spinach; nduja and eggs on sourdough, or bowls of bircher muesli, thick with fruits and nuts.

Picturedrome, Macclesfield

Great British Life: Picturedrome (c) Claire HarrisonPicturedrome (c) Claire Harrison

The reviving spirit behind this former cinema-turned-foodie enclave keeps the fans coming and it’s not just for great booze and dishes to savour post-breakfast. Opening from 9am, it’s also a sceney place to try something hearty to kickstart your day. Head inside first thing and grab a coffee from PD Coffee before mulling over which brekkie dish to go for. Tender Cow prepares grilled ruby red tomatoes over focaccia with poached eggs and whipped garlic yoghurt, or chorizo with fried eggs, hot sauce and hash browns. Rubens dishes up sausage hash with fried eggs and feta, or warming dishes of shakshuka, mopped up with pitta. At Micky’s, meanwhile, the team prepare gargantuan sausage butties on fluffy focaccia. @picturedromemacc

The Jaunty Goat, Chester
Great British Life: The Jaunty Goat. (c) The Jaunty GoatThe Jaunty Goat. (c) The Jaunty Goat Jaunty Goat on Bridge Street has been carving a reputation for specialty coffee and finely tuned brunch and breakfast-style dishes to tuck into throughout the day. The ethos remains firmly on local and sustainable and all the coffee, ethically sourced from farmers in Costa Rica and Guatemala, is roasted locally. Thanks to the original outpost’s success, the team unveiled an offshoot on Northgate Street, though this time using an entirely plant-based menu. Expect all the brunch favourites, from granola topped with coconut yoghurt to avo on sourdough and banana and oat pancakes, plus vegan sausage rolls, revitalising acai bowls and heritage tomatoes on toast. As for the sweet stuff, expect hunks of plant-based banana bread, lemon and poppy seed slices, raspberry, pistachio and polenta cake, and just-baked pastries. If you can’t get enough of their coffee, you can order bags of beans from its website too, and for every order, the green-minded crew plant a tree.

Brook Lane Coffee, Alderley Edge

Another fully-fledged member of the Antipodean breakfast scene in Cheshire, Brook Lane Coffee Co is well versed in feeding hungry locals who pass its windows. Warming bowls of porridge arrive on the table topped with spiced poached pear and honeycomb and a scattering of sesame seeds; there’s eggs benedict with bacon, smoked salmon or mushroom and rich dollops of hollandaise. And avo on toast is elevated with chilli and pickled onion. The team are passionate too about using local suppliers and pluck their bread from fifth-generation W Thatcher's Bakery in Stockport, kombucha from Dunham Massey and all their meat from Brook House Farm in Mottram. And given its location, peering over the mini roundabout on Knutsford Road, you could take your pick from a day’s mooching around the stores of Wilmslow, Alderley Edge or Knutsford.

Brew and Tucker, Frodsham

We may be a long way from Aussie shores but the Antipodean food scene has landed firmly in our county, with Brew & Tucker in Frodsham being one of its originals. Opened in 2017, this neighbourhood hangout has made a name for its quality coffee, served just like the Aussies have it (with two shots, heated to 60-65 degrees), refreshing smoothies and wholesome breakfast plates served until mid-afternoon. The idea here is to stack your sourdough high, whether you go veggie with avo, basil, Vegemite and chilli or stay traditional with poached eggs and bacon. Though you can mix and match with pineapple, feta, tuna and capers, or cherry tomatoes. Round off with a slice of its just-baked banana bread, which goes down exceptionally well with all that silky coffee.

The Roebuck Inn, Mobberley

This resplendent pub squirrelled away in Mobberley has won numerous gongs for its outlandishly styled rooms but the good news is you don’t have to be an overnight guest to tuck into one of its breakfasts. Turn up in the morning to bag yourself a table in one of its cosy nooks away from the biting cold for proper fry-ups. They use Sapling Farm eggs and source their bacon from down the road. Plus there’s also the classic brekkie dishes, from homemade granola to scrambled eggs and smoked salmon on sourdough. And this being a pub, you can take things up a notch with their morning drinks, from fiery bloody Marys to red snappers, a lively mix of Cholmondeley Arms gin, tomato juice, black pepper, tabasco and Worcestershire Sauce. All ready to set you up for a day of shopping in Knutsford, just five minutes’ drive away.