Enjoying Newburgh, Amazing Dinner at Liberty Street Bistro


Since we moved to the Hudson Valley almost two years ago we’ve had many wonderful meals, so many great places to enjoy, yet this dinner, on quiet historic Liberty Street in the up and coming revival city of Newburgh, has been our very best so far.

We had the pleasure of meeting Chef/Owner Michael Kelly who looks too young to be this good, yet the rich flavors and purity of his finespun cuisine comes from years of the often grueling hard work to become a graduate of CIA and gain the incomparable experience he has won under a veritable Who’s Who of New York City restaurateurs.

The comfortable welcoming vibe that greets you here also comes from Micheal’s passionate Hudson Valley roots, and community spirit.


The dining room and bar are nicely separated giving a distinct identity to each. Towards the back is another dining area that has a view of the well appointed and deeply staffed kitchen.


The pleasant to the eyes old world Edison like lighting sadly did not illuminate well for my photos of the food but here you go.

liberty-street-bistro-beef-tartare-caper-dijon-carrot-pesto-framedBeef Tartare, Raw Egg,  Capers, Dijon Moutardes, and a Carrot Green Pesto with perfect bread. It tasted fresh, delicious, safe, and wholesome.

We paired the entire meal with a lovely Willamette Valley, Oregon Pinot Noir called Whole Cluster from the very well chosen wine list.

Kelly’s cuisine is as he describes “contemporary American” with  “classic French-influence” done  “in a modern and simple style”  that embraces “the community, culture, and bounty of the Lower Hudson Valley.”

A rather humble expression for what are actually extraordinarily balanced yet highly complex creations.


We have tasted the very best of Pates in and from France and from American makers and must say that this Pate de Campagne with Testa, a seed coating, Cornichon Pickles, Mustard, Fennel, Greens Chiffonade and Cured Ham, was very possibly the best we have ever tasted.

The cold appetizers came quickly and we were allowed a nice period of time to enjoy, finishes and breath. The main courses came in due time, thankfully not rushed.  They were…


A Duck Confit Strudel, with Lacinato Kale, Fingerling Potaotes, and Eggplant. And…


Pan Roasted Chicken, Mashed Celeriac, French Lentils, a spectacular Jus. and a medley of other vegetable accents. Perfect! The Jus was amazing, but we would have liked more Celeriac.

The thing about Michael Kelly’s cuisine it is that it is slightly exotic yet very familiar and comfortable. The ingredient/flavor guessing game we always play was challenging, exciting and pleasingly surprising.

And we should mention the staff is attentive and congenial, very purposeful to your dining experience.

To close our meal we enjoyed this…


Liberty Street Bistro Sweet Cornbread and House Made Ice Cream with a wonderful warm and cold contrast.

A very happy meal it was.


Liberty Street Bistro

7 Liberty Street, Newburgh, NY



American Diner or Sri Lankan Bistro Your Choice Red Pepper Wappinger Falls

We had always been curious about the quirky little dinner called “Red Pepper” on route 9D just North of Route 84 in Wappinger Falls, with its bright red and yellow colors and promise of “Worlds Favorite Cusine.”

Opened in October two years by excellent chef and very welcoming host Saman Munaweera, Red Pepper has two personalities.

Once seated you’ll be offered two menus, one that offers typical American diner food and Italian American dishes, breakfast, lunch and dinner, and the menu we immediately chose Red Pepper Rasa that presents Saman’s authentic Sri Lankan dishes.


Beef Kothu Roti

Rasa is a Sanskrit term meaning “sap,” “essence” or “fluid.” In the spiritual tradition, this term refers to the essence of human experience; the emotions that govern human life.

The menu includes many delights best accompanied with the most popular Lion Sri Lankan beer.  We enjoyed a most pleasing dinner.


With something new a dish called Chicken Hopper. A full description can be found on the Red Pepper Rasa menu here.  MENU


Coconut Sambol

And familiar favorites like Sri Lankan Dahl and Brinjal Miju

red-pepper-sri-lankan-dahl red-pepper-sri-lankan-brinjal-miju

Dinner was finished with a very rewarding dessert.


Open seven days from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM. Buffet night is Friday and  Saman just announced:

“Hudson Valley’s very first Sri Lankan brunch every Sunday from 10 a.m. till 2 p.m. will be offering Sri Lankan breakfast favorites such as milk rice , string hoppers, hoppers, savoury curries, omelette station and Lankan Style Mimosas. Live cooking HOPPERS,,,We hope to see you every weekend. -Chef Saman & Thanuja”


Saman Munaweera, his wife Thanuja and their children (photo by A. Rooney)

Highlands Current – Sri Lankan Cuisine on the Menu

Also lots of great reviews on Tripadvisor and Yelp

1458 Route 9d, Wappingers Falls, NY





A Delightful Diner at Ziatun Bistro, Beacon NY

Olives Peace

In Arabic Ziatun means olive or olive tree, a wonderfully symbolic name for this delightful new Middle Eastern restaurant in Beacon, NY.

Olives, there oil and the olive branch and leaves have held deep symbolism to many cultures and religions for thousands of years. The olive symbolizes such qualities as a glorious life, renewal, resilience, and peace for all. The oil suggests purity, protection, health and light.  The olive branch long a symbol of peace in the world. Could there be anything more perfect to subdue and reconcile the misguided anger and hate that is being promoted today.

Ziatun is place for a wholesome and pleasing meal to be enjoyed in a relaxing setting.

Ziatun Restaurant Beacon NY Sampler 2

Arfully created by lovable Kamel Jamal. This is his fourth restaurant, part of the family of Beacon Bread Company, American; Angelina’s Pizza; Italian, and Tito Santana Taqueria, Mexican.  All are great. No surprise considering Kamel has been cooking since he was 17. His restaurants are all casual and fun, serving great quality food.

Here the cuisine is authentically Middle Eastern, which always reminds me of the favorite film Cairo Time when Juliette, Patricia Clarkson,  refers to her Cairo visit as “to the Middle East,” her new charming Egyptian acquaintance Tareq, Alexander Siddig, is prompted to wonder what the expression means. “Middle of what?”  Cairo Time


Some could consider the “Middle East” as the middle,  center of the world, all civilization. So much of what we have today has roots there. In any case we love the food.

Falafel is one of our favorite dishes which we have enjoyed in many cities and villages about the world. Here it is sublime, the recipe is Kamel’s mom’s.  One of the best we have ever had. We’ve dined here twice now and are longing for more.

Ziatun Restaurant Beacon NY Lamp

Bring some friends and enjoy the love.

Ziatun Restaurant Beacon NY Friends

Palestinian-Arabic-Middle Eastern. Vegan & Vegetarian


244 Main Street Beacon, NY
(845) 765-8268

Thursday-Monday 11am-9pm
Closed Tuesday & Wednesday


Sip and Savor at Brunette Wine Bar Kingston

Brunette Wine Bar Kingston Market Radish, Chevre Cheese, Malson Salt

Try anything, everything here and you will be very pleased.  Open about a year now Brunette has been on our must visit list for sometime. At last a trip to the Rondout section of  Kingston brought us here.

Brunette Wine Bar Kingston Sip a Rose

The curators and owners, Tracy and husband Jamie Kennard are the most gracious and interesting hosts. Deeply dedicated to presenting very fine local, natural, genuine food and wine. Our conversations wove through all sorts of topics as we carefully savored each sip and bite.

Brunette Wine Bar Kingston Trout Roe Nachos, Creme Fraiche, Kelle Chips Brunette Wine Bar Kingston Smoked Salmon plate, creme Fraishe, pickled onions

Along with the food we enjoyed some very nice wine and will be back soon for more.


33 Broadway, Kingston, NY

Brunette Wine Bar KingstonRead More

Something Special in Downtown Kingston: Brunette Wine Bar
Brunette, a New Wine Bar in Kingston


For the Love of Italy – Enjoying Grano Focacceria with a Great Wine

Grano Focaceria Exceptional Wine Opening

We’ve been waiting about a year for Grano Focacceria to open, creating goodness can take time.

You see, when business partners Eduardo “Eddie” Lauria and John Paul Scanga set out to open a restaurant here in Philipstown Square, on Route 9 at 301, they wanted nothing less than excellent.

Eduardo has a great reputation to maintain, garnered with two previous restaurants he has owned, the highly regarded Il Barilotto Enoteca in Fishkill, and the excellent Aroma Osteria in Wappingers Falls.  The latter he sold to retire, but apparently became restless and decided to try something new, a Focacceria.

A picture is worth a thousand words so let me share this snap of a Focaccia called the Mastroantonio, with Sweet Fennel Sausage, Broccoli Rabe, Sundried Tomatoes Chili Flakes, Mozzarella cheese. Yes it is like a pizza, on the menu described as thin crust pan pizza. The difference is in the crust. Focaccia, which means cake translated from the Italian, is doughier, fluffier, with more texture than a typical pizza crust, yielding a satisfying, comfort food mouthfeel that delivers the flavors upon it with pleasure.

Grano Focaceria Mastroantonio Sweet Fennel Sausag, Broccoli Rabe, Sundried Tomatoes Chili Flakes

Served on a wood plank, each ingredient is of great quality, we were awed by the size of this pie, but somehow found a way to eat it all. It’s irresistible.

In Italy Foccaccia is served plain or with any number of topings, just simple olive and salt, great with black olives, or a fancy preparation like this, or one of the seven others you’ll find here.

There a lot of other options on the menu like this crisp fresh “Cesarina” salad, very simple but satisfying.

Grano Focaceria Cesarina Salad

We really liked the wine list. This wine from the Salentino area of Puglia is terrific. We started with a glass, but then bought a bottle.  Read More about the great wines of Puglia here: Wines of Puglia are Quite Exciting

Grano Focaceria Exceptional Wine

Word on the street is abuzz with praise for Grano Focacceria and while we were the first patrons at 6:00 on a week night, by the time we left every table was filled with happy diners. Not to mention a stream of take out customers.

Our waitress Angela was a joy, apologizing for being new to her trade. Not at all necessary as she opened our wine properly, allbeit with a little shaky confidence. Through our dinner she kept a careful eye attending to our dining pleasure just right.

Grano Foccaceria 

3182 Route 9 at Route 301
Philipstown Square
Cold Spring, NY 10516





Let’s Stock Up and Eat! Marbled Market, Beacon NY

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Sign

New in Beacon, an exciting eatery, just opened by the fabulous people of Marbled Meat Shop in Cold Spring, Lisa Hall and Chris Pascarella, and for this venture they persuaded long time friend Adam Sternberg to join them as chef.

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Lida anad DIanaLocated on Teller where the Copper Roof Deli used to be, the place is spruced up in Marbled style. Open just a short while, the word is apparently out.

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY customers Line up The place was hoping last Saturday when we stopped in for some lunch.

What makes Stock Up great is the Marbled team’s uncompromising dedication to using the freshest and best quality ingredients. The deli counter has a fabulous selection of cold cuts.

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Deli CounterWe opted for two of their creative sandwiches, inspired versions of classics.

The Ruben + Sprouts with house pastrami, brussel sprout sauerkraut, swiss cheese, Stock Up secret sauce, on griddled rye. Big, delicious, yet not overly filling.

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Ruben Sandwich and Pickles

The Philly Style (Wiz Wit), Adam is from Philly, scrumptious shaved beef, the best meat to be found, with hopped up beer cheese wiz with smoked sauteed onion on a crusty fresh seeded roll.

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Philly Sandwich and Sides

Sandwiches come with a side of your choice from an awesome selection of healthy tasty creations.

Check this place out, you will be delighted.

Stock Up

29 Teller Ave
Beacon, New York
(845) 202-7400

Read More about Stock up on A Little Beacon Blog.

Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Real Silverware Marbled Market Stock Up Beacon NY Deli Counter chicken



Happy at Healy’s Corner Bar

Healy's corner restaurant and bar, tapsEvery couple of months we make the trek up to the big beautiful DeCicco & Sons market in Brewster.  It is a forty minute drive, which for us, who used to live in Montclair, NJ  no more than 10 minutes from six great supermarkets and countless specialty shops, is a ways.

DeCicco’s has a great selection of all sorts of gourmet delights so it is worth the drive. On our latest trip we decided to check out Healy’s Corner Bar in nearby Carmel.

Healy’s is relatively new, opened in 2011, but it feels like it has been here forever, a friendly neighborhood type place that I loved growing up. Great places like this seem to have disappeared over the years as corporate chains baited diners and drinkers away with what looked like the next big thing.  We have never favored corporate dining and are delighted when we find a place like this.

Hear you’ll find a full bar with a good number of beers on tap, half are rotating craft, the rest major brands.  For your dining pleasure there is a nice menu of American dishes including, creative salads, enticing sandwiches, entrees called “Healy’s Signatures” with steaks, chicken dishes, fish and chips, and more.  On the menu you will also find homemade Italian from “Curzio’s Kitchen” who ever that is, sounds authentic.  And burgers! 12 varieties, or build your own. Last year, voted best burgers in Putnam. They are served with a choice of  homemade French or sweet potato fries, potato salad, garlic mashed, cole slaw, side salad, or vegetable of the day. For those who need there are gluten free options. Eat at the bar or in one of the two dining rooms.

Served by one of the genuinely friendly bartenders I have ever met, Jason, we enjoyed some good beer and burgers.  What’s on tap can be found on Beer Menus. I won’t be looking for wine here.

I devoured the special burger of the month, January, “Mac and Cheese Burger” with very tasty French fries.

Healy's corner restaurant and bar, burge special mac and cheeseDiana enjoyed the bun-less “Shroom Burger” with portobella mushrooms instead of bread. She picked the sweet potato fries, which she did not like as much as my French, said they weren’t sweet enough.

Healy's corner restaurant and bar, burger shrooms

There is a happy hour and events and specials during the week, live music, more info on Healey’s web site.

Thursday is $2 Taco night, and your are invited to take the “Taco Challenge” which I understand to win you’ll have to eat more than 21.  I had two, good, not the best, but a good cheap bar bite.

Healy's corner restaurant and bar, thursday 2 dollar tacos  The bar has a lot of TV’s and I imagine Healy’s get quite crowded on  major sport days.

Nothing much to look at from the outside, yet Healy’s is a friendly neighborhood place with good food and drink for reasonable prices. As it is mean to be. Lovingly owned and operated by Stacey & Ryan Healy.

Healy’s Corner Restaurant
474 Route 52
Carmel, NY 10512
(845) 306-7087



Brunch at Purdy’s Farmer and the Fish

purdy's farmer and the fish Bloody Mary Grilled cheese with bacon

What better way to begin a happy Sunday brunch than a sprightly bloody mary! They have a few to choose from here, I opted for the grilled cheese and bacon.

Purdy’s Farmer and the Fish, is a restaurant that has come up often when we’ve asked new acquaintances here to name some favorites. Taking their advise we joined friends here for a delightful meal. Continue reading Brunch at Purdy’s Farmer and the Fish


Beacon’s Got Bakers

Ella's Bella Busy Counter

Their are few small cities that can boast of having as many fabulous bakers as Beacon, NY.  Whether it is gluten free, authenticate Non GMO whole grain, or utterly decadent you will find your heart’s desire here.

Beacon Bakery You Are Most Welcome

Starting from the North and heading down Main Street our first stop is Beacon Bread Company at 193 Main Street we love this place for their great, breakfasts, brunch and all.  Known for their friendly service, great homemade soups and artisan breads we sung their praises here Beacon Bakery Beckons.

All You Knead Bakery

One of our favorites for their breads, desserts and savory pies is All You Knead, they are always at our local farmers market.

Pure, handmade and true to traditions their breads and pastries are made from the best available non-GMO whole wheat. Here they praise the high gluten protein level in their products as it produces a hearty, chewy crumb interior.

All You Knead  is at 308 Main Street in Beacon and at many Hudson Valley Farmers Market as well as Adams Fairacre Markets.

Get Frosted Cupcakes

If sugar shock is on your mind, and who does not love that, then the hand crafted delights at Get Frosted are for you. We have not tried but it sure looks good a few doors north at 323 Main Street Beacon. Here the say “We are a “from scratch” bakery that uses local produce and products whenever they are available.” There is a weekly rotation of vanilla and chocolate and 10 other flavors, out of 100, each week.

Ella's Bella The goodies

If gluten free is your need or simply your desire then Ella’s Bellas will be heaven to you. We buy bread and desserts here because they are just so delicious. Ella’s serves food and wine all day long as well as great coffee, teas and soup.Ella's Bella The Menu

You can also buy Beacon’s own Tas Kafe here which is fresh roasted right on location.  Ella’s goodness can be found at shops around the valley.  They are also working on opening a shop in Cold Spring.

Ella’s Bellas 418 Main Street, Beacon, NY

A bit further on is the last stop on our bakery crawl,  The Beacon Bagel, is a fine place for breakfast or lunch.

Beacon Bagel ShopA creative selection of bagels are found here along with sandwiches and coffee from 7:00 AM to 3:00.   The Beacon Bagel 466 Main Street Beacon.


Neighborhood Bar & Grill Meets Manhattan Cosmopolitan

The Vault Dining Room and Bar

Step inside The Vault, a new and exciting Beacon restaurant, and you feel immediately at home, the feeling only you get at a local place.  We joined friends here for dinner on a Sunday night, and thoroughly enjoyed the spacious yet cozy environment, worldly cuisine and smart drink selections that give this place the feeling of a neighborhood place with small town charm and big city flair! Continue reading Neighborhood Bar & Grill Meets Manhattan Cosmopolitan