I'm glad to see that there is in fact a new chef at the BBC--even though it seems like it's been a revolving door in the almost ten years I've been here.
Based on the last few times I and my family have been--admittedly prior to the last two weeks--I'd not only agree with Marty's two star review, I'd even agree with the Gannett headline. It was profoundly disappointing the last three times, and that's because we've been going there for years. It's one of the first places my wife and I went when we moved out here, and it's always been one of those default restaurant choices for us. It's been maybe two years since I've had a completely satisfying meal there, but I was willing to let things slide; one or another element might be off, but the rest of the meal would make up for it. But we stopped cold after the last visit.
One issue I've had is, despite the revolving chef door, the basic menu hasn't changed or altered much at all. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, because many of the sandwiches were very good, and the garlic fries with the just-cold-enough ketchup were wonderful. But. With each year, the things that have been staples have gotten less consistent. The last few times, the sandwiches have been soggy and sliding apart, which makes them hard to hold and less than appetizing to eat.
And if the argument is that they're a brewpub and at least the pub grub is still okay, I'll counter with the onion rings. In the past, they've been light and tasty. Our last visit, we took bites out of five rings--all of which looked done--and each time, the ring exploded in a puff of flour and raw onion. I'd almost rather have them overly greasy, at least I'd know they'd been cooked.
What about the rest of the pub grub? The beer cheese served with the pretzels has tasted less and less like beer or cheese of late. Marty's right, the garlic fries have been disappointing for some time, either too soft or too crispy, with room temperature ketchup. (Nothing against room temperature ketchup in general, but the finely chilled ketchup was the perfect accompaniment, and one touch that had set BBC apart for us.) The chicken tenders have been too crunchy for me, let alone my 5 year old who normally loves them. The chili has been bland. And the potato skins vanished from the menu at some point, which is a shame. (Considering the wild inconsistency, maybe it's not a shame...)
The beer has been, still is and likely will be wonderful. For the moment, that's not enough. Beer is indeed food, which I live by in my own kitchen, but it doesn't do much when you're hungry for a meal. I'm glad to see that there's a new executive chef. Maybe he can whip things back into shape. I look forward to finding out.