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Merle Exit Relaxes At The Cromwell Manor Inn, And And Samples Great Food At Restaurants In Orange County

New York State's Orange County is a great choice for a travel destination. Three particular Hot Spots are: Gomez Mill House; Brotherhood Winery; and the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame. My tour of New York's Orange County took me to various locales, accommodations and restaurants. First I would love to share what I felt are the "hot spot attractions." Esther and I checked into the Cromwell Manor Inn, located in Cornwall. Didn't meet Jack the owner, but did meet Pamela Rini, who was running the place. She is usually around just to cook and serve breakfast. I stayed on the first floor in the room called The Wellington.

The inn has a living room area with a fireplace, television and piano. I tinkled. Breakfast room is adorable and gives a view of the gardens. In case you don't bring your own computer, there is a room with a few to log into for internet use. No speakers, so wouldn't have been able to do my radio show there.

Pamela is both a baker and singer. Got her CD called Over The Line: World of Pain. I put up a song on my radio show and recently interviewed her. Looks like they are considering calling inn a B&BS…Bed and Breakfast and Song.

Breakfast: Parfait of fresh fruit with Devonshire Cream, followed by French Toast with a bourbon sauce and banana slices. Pamela believes in starting off with a dessert so that you have room for it. Website for Cromwell Manor Inn is .

I was later given a sample of her cupcakes. She certainly prides herself in the decoration. One had shark fin on top and read, "Fins Up". Another had "Whirl With Merle". Will do a tasting on my radio show.

There are some tasty places to dine in New York's Orange County. Tiring out from touring and eating, you'll also want to rest your mind and feet. Body Having written about there "hot spots" in New York's Orange County, I thought you might be interested in where to dine as well as where to rest your mind and feet.

I had dinner at the Canterbury Brook Inn located in Cornwell. Hans Baurmann is the chef/owner with a Swiss style about the menu. Started off with the Melange Nicoise: fresh mozzarella, roasted peppers, shrimp, artichokes, smoked salmon and shellfish. Appetizer? It was a whole entree's worth of delicious edibles. Entrée of Crisp Roasted Long Island Duckling a L´Orange. Half a duck, and not a little one, either. Had to have the Creme Brulee for dessert, just for the laugh of it that relates to a story in my book. Odd that the whole thing was warm. I'm used to the basic part of it being cold and the top sugar, crunchy...so I didn't really love this one.

There's Newburgh at the Waterfront and "downtown". It looks as if the downtown area around Liberty Street is a bit depressed. "All The Food That's Fit To Eat" is the insignia of a restaurant called The Wherehouse (845-561-7240). Front room is very "bar-ish" with un-fancy tables.I understand that this place has about 100 different beers including one line called He-brew. Lots of different sodas as well. There is a back room for events for singing and such. Of course, what's really important is the food.

Down home cooking and the owner wants it done from scratch. Passed up the starters, although I might have gone for the Wherehouse Wings - one pound of plump chicken wings, steamed to keep them tender, then fried golden brown. The soup of the day was Broccoli Florentine. Loads of bbq items to choose from, but I was most curious about their Kobe Beef Burgers. The Yokozuna - half pound burger with hand cut fries, sauteed onions, mushrooms, cheese and bacon. Rather than eating the cut fries (which looked more like soggy potato chips) I opted for sweet potato fries and not the frozen kind. Yes, they make their own. It looks as though Esther enjoyed the fries as well. She later posed under the heat lamps of the kitchen…to be funny.

We went to Torches Restaurant for dinner. It's one of the many restaurants located on the Waterfront area of Newburgh, NY. Although they were part of Restaurant Week, I decided to order off their regular menu. Began with a Fleur du Cap Chardonnay from South Africa. I had a Caesar Salad followed by Strip And Shore: Charbroiled NY Strip, grilled jumbo shrimp, cheddar smashed baked potatoes and veggies. Great dressing on the Caesar Salad. Steak served just as I requested and everything else was delicious. Locally made Ice Cream for dessert. I also went into the kitchen to video a Fire-y shrimp dish. Loved the fish in the tank.

"Our menu is produced using local Hudson Valley Products: Our chicken is supplied by Murray´s Farm. Our dairy products are supplied by Hudson Valley Fresh. Our Ice Cream is supplied by Jane´s. Our cheese is supplied by Old Chatham Sheepherding Company and Hawthorne Valley Farm. Our tortillas are supplied by Maizteca Foods."

 By Merle Exit

Getting There:

For current packages available and to plan your escape to the Cromwell Manor Inn visit http://cromwellmanorinn.com/manorhouse.html or for the Canterbury Brook Inn go to www.thecanterburybrookinn

To explore attractions, entertainment, and restaurants in Orange County visit www.orangetourism.org/.

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