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Toasted Yolk brunch chain to open in Bradenton, Lakewood Ranch


The Toasted Yolk Cafe features breakfast and lunch items as well as a bar.
The Toasted Yolk Cafe features breakfast and lunch items as well as a bar.
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  • Manatee-Sarasota
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Brunch restaurant The Toasted Yolk, which made its Southwest Florida debut in Sarasota in February 2023, is opening in Bradenton and Lakewood Ranch this summer.

Known for its focus on both breakfast and lunch, the eatery traces its roots to Texas, where the first Toasted Yolk opened in 2010. Chris Milton, who grew up in Bradenton, co-founded the Toasted Yolk Cafe with a friend in Houston and is the company’s CEO.

Now husband-and-wife entrepreneurs Chris and Kelly Milton own the restaurant in Sarasota and will be the owners of the new locations in Lakewood Ranch and Bradenton.

“We love the communities so much and wanted to bring our concept to his hometown,” Kelly Milton says in an email to the Business Observer.

The Bradenton Toasted Yolk will be at 5502 Cortez Road W. There, the Miltons are aiming for a July opening.

Lakewood Ranch’s Toasted Yolk will be at 6564 University Parkway, Suite 122, with the goal to open in August or September, according to Kelly Milton.

Having multiple eateries in the Sarasota-Bradenton area will provide an advantage for hiring, Kelly Milton says.

“We knew in order to build a strong team we would have to have more than one restaurant,” she says. “Building a territory will attract higher-caliber employees because there is opportunity for growth. With one unit, the highest a manager can be would be general manager.”

And the Miltons are not stopping at three locations either.

“Our hopes are to eventually expand to 5-10 within the area,” Kelly Milton says. “This brings layers of more opportunities for promotion and development of the team.” 

In the Houston area where the Toasted Yolk Cafe began, the company operates more than a dozen restaurants, which helped build brand recognition.

“One of the challenges for us has been getting our name out,” Kelly Milton says about the company's launch into Florida. “So many Floridians have no idea who we are. Once people try us — we have created a regular! I feel with getting the other two locations open will just help to build our brand in South Florida.”

The company has been franchising since 2018, according to Chris Milton.

Now The Toasted Yolk has 39 restaurants in multiple states with 16 restaurants coming soon, including the Bradenton and Lakewood Ranch locations.

While the company does operate as a franchise, Kelly Milton says it is still a family-run business.

Her three boys “can be seen bussing tables and clearing plates alongside us during the summer," she says. "Even though this is a franchise, we are still a family running a restaurant.”

On the menu are items like the signature dish The Toasted Yolk, which features two slices of sourdough bread and an egg in the middle of each, cooked to order with a choice of breakfast meat, as well as soups, salads and sandwiches for lunch. A menu that includes a full spread for lunch is one of the key ways The Toasted Yolk differentiates itself from other brunch restaurants.

The Toasted Yolk Cafe is also known for its bright colors inside and full bar, another way that it stands apart from competitors. The words "It's never too early to get toasted, Sarasota" are above the bar at the restaurant off US 41 in Sarasota.

 

author

Elizabeth King

Elizabeth is a business news reporter with the Business Observer, covering primarily Sarasota-Bradenton, in addition to other parts of the region. A graduate of Johns Hopkins University, she previously covered hyperlocal news in Maryland for Patch for 12 years. Now she lives in Sarasota County.

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