Proud to be a Member of Select Registry

Distinguished Inns of North America

Michael and I opened the Brampton more than 27 years ago. In those days shared baths were still acceptable and there were no websites. It’s ancient history, almost like watching an Elvis movie. Today the guest experience at a Select Registry B&B or country inn surpasses that of many upscale chain hotels. Belonging to and being recognized by such an organization assures travelers of the quality they can expect. Select Registry started 45 years ago and the bar has been constantly raised by the expectations of our guests. To belong, each member inn agrees to be inspected anonymously. Keeps us on our toes! Here are a few facts you might want to consider next time you plan a getaway:

  • Location: Select Registry inns and B&B’s are located in or near places of beauty and interest. Some are in metropolitan areas and all offer a fabulous alternative to big box hotels. The Brampton is located on 20 acres a mile from Chestertown, MD. We are very close to the historic shopping district, the Chester River, Washington College and fabulous restaurants. Technically it takes us only 1 hour and 20 minutes to the Baltimore or Philadelphia airports and 3 and a half hours to NYC but we are a world away. Time slows down on the Eastern Shore.
  • Breakfast: It’s the second B in B&B and we take it very seriously. Here at the Brampton we offer you choices. The daily chef’s whim of a sweet and a savory option. This could be our signature buttermilk blueberry pancake, served with the real deal; maple syrup from our friends at Edgewood Farm in Bury, Quebec or a spinach and goat cheese frittata. We always have free-range eggs; your “style.” A side of hash browns, grits or sautéed fresh tomatoes with herbs from the garden when in season. Smoked bacon or local sausage, sometimes ham or homemade turkey sausage. There is always gluten-free oatmeal with raisins and toasted pecans or fat-free Greek yogurt with fresh fruit available. We also offer a spread in the afternoon. Carole bakes the most amazing treats such as cakes, bars, tea breads and cookies. These are offered alongside a savory choice, which could be finger sandwiches, cheese crackers or hummus and veggies. Everything is made right here in the inn kitchen. Come spring we’ll be planting vegetables and herbs anew.
  • Privacy: An inn like the Brampton and most Select Registry properties offer enhanced privacy. We will leave you alone if you so wish! If you would like a breakfast delivered to your cottage, we’ll be happy to do so. If you would like your room tidied at a certain time, we’ll be happy to do so. If you don’t want to see anybody and just stay in, we’ll be happy to deliver fresh towels and leave them behind your door. You can let us know ahead of time or during your visit. We’ll be happy to do what it takes to make your visit the perfect getaway. If you would like to interact with your innkeepers please read on:
  • Personal Service. We are here for you! Nobody in the lodging industry does this better than independent innkeepers such as members of Select Registry. Most owners live on the property or very close by. Michael and I have lived in this community for years (almost 28 to be exact) and raised kids here. We would love to share with you the history of Brampton, the best places to eat crabs, best sunsets, best bird watching, bike routes, where to park in Annapolis, quirky historic sights, Tallulah’s grave site, etc. If you need a recommendation for a restaurant or a reservation we’ll be happy to help. Please ask, email, call, in person; We’ll be delighted to share what we know.
  • Romance: Select Registry innkeepers know a thing or two about offering a romantic setting to their guests. We offer romance packages with flowers and chocolates and we have organized seamless proposals. We know about comfortable beds, good linens, working fireplaces, showers with body jets and steam, soaking tubs for two, and privacy.
  • Great Value. At the Brampton we provide you with complimentary internet service, comfortable beds with fine linens, in-room robes, towel warmers, fine teas and coffee, and an endless jar of home-made cookies. Did you forget your toothbrush or shaving kit at home? It’s OK! We have a complimentary hospitality kit for you that includes all that. Our breakfast alone will sustain you until well into the afternoon and teatime, making lunch unnecessary. Rest assured, as a member of Select Registry, Distinguished Inns of America, we offer an extra-ordinary ambiance, experience and exceptional value.
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Who’s Ready for Spring???

It’s certainly not news that this winter’s weather  has been a bit extreme. . .as many predicted it would be.  Now that it’s March, the month of SPRING, how can we not dream of hyacinth and daffodils.  Of strawberries and rhubarb.  And the sun…. ahhhhhh, can’t you just feel it?  NO??   Well, maybe we can conjure up spring with a tasty recipe.

Of all vegetables, perhaps none other than asparagus represents spring so well.  Those adorable spears that poke their heads through the ground in early spring are just begging to be washed, and washed again (they’re sandy little things) and cooked up simply without much fanfare.  When you have your own patch, as we do here at the Brampton,  ephemeral is the word that best describes asparagus.  Get them while they’re here; eat them early and often; at breakfast, lunch and dinner; until you’re almost, but not quite, tired of them.   Then POOF, they’re gone.  Wait until next year.

Of course asparagus is available year round thanks to modern living, but it definitely tastes better when it was grown locally, and you’ve picked it yourself.

Asparagus

This is a recipe for a simple, elegant and delicious asparagus dish inspired by our friend Matthew Lovette of Jumping Rocks Photography, who takes all of the beautiful pictures on our website.  He’s a pretty good cook, too!

 

Apsaragus, Spring Pea, and Lemon Pasta

1/2 pound of your favorite pasta

1# fresh asparagus spears, washed very well, and cut into roughly 1 inch pieces (separate the tips from the rest of the spears)

1/2 bunch scallions, white and green parts, chopped

1 1/2 cups fresh peas

1 clove garlic, pressed

zest and juice of one lemon

small handful fresh parsley, chopped fine

1/4 cup olive oil

1-2 tablespoons butter, optional

salt and pepper to taste

parmesan and/or ricotta cheese, optional

 

Boil pasta according to package directions.  Reserve about 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

Place a large frying pan over medium heat.  Heat olive oil and add garlic and scallions.  Saute for a minute or two without letting the garlic brown.  Add the asparagus spears, holding the tips back for a few minutes (they will cook faster).  Saute, stirring often until the spears start to soften, about 3 minutes.  Next add the peas and the asparagus tips.  Stir well.  When the tips are bright green, add the reserved pasta water.  Turn the heat up and let it just start to bubble.  If you want a richer sauce, add the butter at this point and swirl pan to melt it.  Remove from heat and finally add the lemon juice and zest and the parsley.  Toss the whole thing with the cooked pasta.  Add salt and pepper to taste.   Top with freshly grated parmesan and/or a dollop of fresh ricotta cheese if you wish.

Enjoy!

We promise spring is right around the corner…Take advantage of our Spring Break Special and get up close and personal with our asparagus patch yourself!  :)

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Older and Newer Faces at the Inn…

Have we ever told you about our amazing staff at our Maryland bed and breakfast??

To run a place like the Brampton it takes a lot of quiet magic behind the scene and our staff is really good. I’m listing them by seniority:

First there is Manick Burton, our gardener and weekend breakfast server. Manick started working for us in the last millennium, 1999 to be exact. She is the lady with the charming French accent. She has an amazing gift with flowers and we have been lucky to have her take care of them in the garden. In her spare time she is a wonderful potter.

Manick and her flowers

Manick and her flowers

Then there is Carole Baxter, the breakfast chef and the genie behind the cakes, cookies, pies, muffins, scones etc. We can blame her for all those broken New Year’s resolutions! She has been keeping the cookie jar full for 10+ years now.

Carole making biscotti

Carole making biscotti

Rita Scardino, is our innkeeper extraordinaire. She is the one who answers the phone most days and you’ll recognize her by her wicked sense of humor. She also cooks breakfast, is the perfect wedding coordinator and keeps everybody organized. Mostly me :) She joined us in 2006.

Tara Hanifee and Jen Russum are our hardworking housekeepers. These ladies know how to keep the rooms and the inn clean and sparkling.

The newest additions to our team are Lucas Hanscom and Rachel Jorgenson. Technically Luke is our most senior employee. He started as a teenager when we bought Brampton in 1987. He is Michael’s son and was put to work right away cutting grass, chopping wood, making fires, serving breakfast etc. After graduating from High School, he left. Quickly. College was calling on the West Coast. Who could blame him! However, his memory is playing tricks on him because now he is back cutting grass, chopping wood, making fires, serving breakfast etc. This time with great enthusiasm. He is very interested in continuing the hospitality at the Brampton. Luckily he met Rachel. In Chestertown of all places! They are a wonderful couple and Rachel joined us last summer as an innkeeper. She is a natural at this job. She and Rita take turns assisting and looking after our guests.

Luke and Rachel trying out the new firepit

Luke and Rachel trying out the new firepit

Michael and I are slowly pulling away more and more from the day to day operation at the inn, but we are sill popping our heads in regularly and Michael is still the handyman. Nobody knows Brampton, with its quirkiness, better than he does.

 

 

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