The Brockton Villa restaurant was originally constructed as a weekend retreat by a San Diego physician named Dr. Joseph Rodes in 1894. Rodes paid only $165 for the ocean property and after his death two years later, two sisters (Olivia Mudgett and Nellie Mills) who were La Jolla’s first real estate agents, moved in. Mills named the cottage “The Brockton Villa” in honor of her Brockton, Massachusetts roots and the name stuck.
In the 1920’s, the signature abalone-shell-enhanced fireplace was built and in the 1940’s, Moreland MacPike, or the “Turtle Lady,” took residence at the Villa with her piano-performing turtle.
In the 90’s Pannikin Coffee and Tea bought the lease and turned it into an official restaurant, as it functions today.
Current owners, Megan, daughter of the Pannikin family, and her husband Dave Heine say it this way: “Brockton Villa remains a significant reminder of the architectural past alive in our La Jolla community: simple and lovely, blessed by the sea, the sun and the sand. On behalf of everyone at the restaurant, we hope you enjoy your experience and come back to see us soon.”
The Heines and Brockton Villa would like to share their Coast Toast recipe with Entertainer readers. Served all day, this popular item keeps diners coming back time and again.
Now you can enjoy Coast Toast in your own kitchen.
- 1 loaf soft French bread (sliced diagonnaly, about 1 1/2″ thick)
- 1 quart whipping cream
- 10 eggs
- 3/4 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup sugar
- a pinch of salt
- 2 Tbs. vanilla
- 2 Tbs. orange flavoring
Combine liquid ingredients. Pour over bread slices. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour. Remove bread and discard liquid. Spread butter on flat grill. Cook bread until golden brown, then bake at 450 degrees for 5-7 minutes or until break is puffed up like a souffle. Dust with powdered sugar. Serve immediately.
Special thanks to Elizabeth Scofield, Brockton Villa’s Hostess, for her gracious hospitality during my lunch visit last week and for her help putting this article together.