Distinction’s Recipe of the Day

Southern Distinction presents a new recipe every day from one of our sponsored restaurants of the week! This week we present Mirko Pasta from Watkinsville, Ga. along with other sponsors including Striplings General Store,  The Greenbriar, Hillside Orchards,  The Veggie Patch, and The Olive Basket.

Braised Wild Quails, Brandy Pancetta sauce over Crispy Leeks

“Nido si Quaglie”


By Mirko Pasta & The Greenbriar


4 Quails breast cut butterfly
6 oz. Pancetta or Bacon (Striplings General Store)
4 oz. Brandy
1 oz. flour
1 oz. sage (The Veggie Patch)
2 oz. extra virgin oil (The Olive Basket)
2 Roma tomatoes
1 cup chicken broth


  1. Wrap the Quails with the Pancetta or bacon, and season them with a little salt, pepper and flour.
  2. In a casserole with a little oil, medium heat, cook the Quails 2 minutes on each side, giving a nice brown color.
  3. Add the Brandy, let evaporate a little, then add the sage, the roma tomato diced and the chicken stock.
  4. Cover, reduce the heat, and let it cook for another 20 minutes.
  5. Add salt and Pepper (to taste).
  6. Meanwhile, julienne the leeks longwise, mix it with a little flour, deep fry till crispy.
  7. On a serving plate, put the fried Leek first (like a Bird nest with a hole in the middle), put one or two Quails in the middle and a little sauce over the top. Decorate with some herbs.


From Chef Alessandro Di Maggio: I was born on November 26, 1970 in the Southern blue coast of France, Nice. Since I was a little boy I grew up in a big Italian family, 4 brothers and 2 sisters. My mother, a small, beautiful Tuscan woman who resembles Sophia Loren, and my father from France with Sicilian origins, are both strict and passionate about family and food. No one was allowed to leave the table until the end of the meal. My father used to say: “Cooking is a mission to put good food in your heart, your eyes and your stomach.” Cooking is a passion and every normal recipe has to become special. When I cook I love to improvise. Every recipe always comes out a little different, depending on your mood. Customers can really distinguish the chef’s mood in the flavor profiles. If the chef is upset or frustrated then the food often comes out messy and sloppy. If the chef is passionate about his/her food and truly loves the dish then the customer feels this as well.