The Oliver Awards are judged by an independent panel of industry experts who generously volunteer their time to evaluate submissions and engage in the judging procedure. Selection is based on their proficiency, background, and roles within the food, drink, & hospitality sector. Judges with any conflicts of interest related to specific categories abstain from evaluating entries in those categories. Post the submission deadline, judges receive access to the online judging portal and have a 5-day window to assess each entry against the category criteria. Following this, they meet to discuss their scores, and reach a final decision, relying exclusively on the written entry's content and any accompanying testimonials. The entire judging process is confidential, and all decisions are final.

Steph Moon

Chef Consultant -

Stephanie Moon is Chef Consultant to various businesses in the Yorkshire and North of England. Steph has travelled the world with her job working from The Dorchester to Hotels in Australia, Germany, America, and at the World famous Kulm Hotel in Saint Moritz. Steph is passionate about local produce and helps to promote local suppliers as much as possible. She is a regular on the food scene and can often be seen demonstrating at The Great Yorkshire Show, Harrogate Flower Show, York Living North and York Food Festival. She is passionate about teaching and loves working with The Yorkshire Wolds Cookery School and The Cooks Place. Steph also works with various colleges around Yorkshire including Leeds City College. She is keen to help the next generation of young chefs coming through and supports many youngsters with this, including 9 at Rudding Park with their Chef development programme. Steph loves to help start up businesses as well as established places looking for a fresh approach.

Wayne Topley

Chair - Leeds Hotel & Venues Association (LHVA)

Wayne is a professional hospitality leader with extensive experience of building strong teams and driving hospitality businesses to achieve great results with a consistent focus on the guest, the investor and the team. Being Yorkshire based for the last 20 years and delivering tangible results across a range of Hotels including destination conference venues, airport hotels, city centre properties and 5-star golf and leisure resorts. A hospitality stalwart, Wayne is a passionate advocate for the industry, vocally lobbying for hospitality and very keen focus on memorable service and clear identify for business in Yorkshire. As well as the Chair of Leeds Hotels & Venues Association (LHVA) since 2017, he was a pro-active Board member of Leeds BID from September 2018 until January 2020. Wayne is also the Managing Director of Cedar Court Hotels Group.

Abbey Maclure

Lifestyle Specialist & Senior Reporter - Yorkshire Evening Post

Abbey Maclure is a senior reporter and the Yorkshire Evening Post's lifestyle specialist. She heads up the YEP’s Little Oliver and Barfly teams, which review restaurants, bars and pubs every week, and has developed an intricate knowledge of the restaurant scene from the city centre to the suburbs. From interviewing the city's most accomplished chefs to trying out new street food start-ups and party hotspots, Abbey is passionate about giving businesses across the sector a platform to shout about their achievements.

Stanley Dru

Content Creator & Foodie -

Stanley is our honorary Yorkshireman after moving from Wales to Leeds 13 years ago. He’s a full-time content creator and also writes for H&N magazine, covering restaurant reviews, bar, travel and mens fashion. As a self confessed “foodie” he has munched his way through Leeds and is always on the lookout for delicious and innovative cuisine that not only tastes wonderful but looks incredible too, as a food photographer he can’t resist a good food snap! Stan has appeared on Channel 4’s DNA diners and works wi th a number of well know brands, such a Sky, ASOS and M&S.

Danny Malin

YouTuber & Host - Rate My Takeaway

From selling meat off a market in Leeds and enjoying the odd kebab, to becoming a viral comedian online for his funny social media videos, and then becoming the face of the now award-winning Rate My Takeaway seen by hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Danny Malin has gone from being a familiar face at Leeds Market to winning Youtube’s UK’s Breakthrough Creator of the Year Award 2021 confirming his popularity across the world for his down-to-earth candid food review videos.

There’s nothing Danny loves more than spending quality family time exploring Yorkshire, eating food for a living, doing community work, and making funny videos just to make people smile. Danny is an ambassador for a range of mental health charities, he supports up-and-coming northern stars of the community and he funds a range of community organisations.


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