Upscale brunch restaurant coming to Biloxi brings a twist on eggs Benedict

Hannah Ruhoff/The Sun Herald

Breakfast special enough to make customers feel like they are on vacation is the goal of the The Toasted Yolk brunch spot opening on Howard Avenue in Biloxi in the spring.

A second location is planned in Gulfport, said owners and Coast residents John Lockett and Ryan LaFleur, who also teamed up to make Dickey’s Barbecue restaurants successful in South Mississippi.

They chose The Toasted Yolk brand because the restaurants are bigger, nicer and have a more high end menu than any breakfast or brunch restaurant in the area, they said.

The Biloxi location, adjacent to the new Howard Square apartments in the former Josette’s at 902 Howard Ave. in Biloxi, will open first.

While it will be one of the smaller Toasted Yolk restaurants, an 800-square foot patio will expand the dining room and let customers enjoy the weather and the views of downtown, the Beau Rivage Resort and Casino a couple of blocks south and MGM Park across the street.

“The Gulfport location is going to be almost twice as big,” Lockett said. It will be built north of I-10 in the Sam’s Club vicinity, he said.

Menu with a twist

The entire breakfast and lunch menus are available all morning and afternoon along with the full-service bar and coffee bar.

The restaurant will be open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., a concept that will allow for a single shift and provide quality of life for employees at a time when employees are at a premium, Lockett said.

Toasted Yolk’s menu has perennial favorites like eggs, pancakes and biscuits and gravy, along with healthy options.

For those who are more adventurous and want that “on vacation” experience, the brand is known for its regional specialties that LeFleur says “play on different types of Benedicts.”

The Arnold gives breakfast a twist with English muffin halves topped with Canadian bacon, two poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. Make it a Southwestern Arnold and it’s topped with sausage, onion, jalapeños and queso sauce. The Alaskan Arnold substitutes salmon and spinach and Southern Fried Arnold switches the English muffin with biscuit halves topped with two hand-battered chicken tenders and two poached eggs, all covered with country sausage gravy.

Lockett and LeFleur said they met with franchise co-founder Chris Milton and his staff in Texas, where Toasted Yolk is headquartered, and sampled the menu. The Arnolds were the standout, they said. Soups, sandwiches and salads highlight the lunch menu and the beverage menu offers their own bloody Mary or bloody Maria from the full bar or ultimate morning treat— a toasted Yolk coffee with Baileys Irish Cream, Kahlúa, Frangelico, coffee, and whipped cream.

Biloxi flair

The stretch of Howard Avenue where The Toasted Yolk will open is being restored with the look and feel of Old Biloxi. About two dozen new apartments recently opened at Howard Square and more are coming as the nearby Barq Building is being restored.

“We feel very fortunate to have that spot,” Lockett said, and they plan to fit into the transformation.

It’s going to have a very Biloxi feel,” LaFleur said. Each of the restaurants has a location-specific mural that will make it feel very Biloxi, he said.

Lockett said they don’t think of it as a franchise, but a locally-owned restaurant. He lives in Pass Christian after retiring from the Air Force and spending two tours at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi. LaFleur lives in Gulfport, and said they plan to make breakfast something special for those who live and visit South Mississippi.