We are Jill Turton and Mandy Wragg and Squidbeak is the fruit of our never-ending journey around Yorkshire, keeping tabs on restaurants, wine bars, cafes, tea rooms and good places to stay, with a promise to be independent and honest about the Yorkshire food and drink landscape.
We share in writing the Yorkshire Post’s weekly restaurant review column as well as leading a secret life as restaurant inspectors for national food guides. We've written for Sawday, Routiers, the AA and Egon Ronay and various websites but there are some we can't tell you about because we have to inspect anonymously. Trust us, between us we've eaten in every halfway decent restaurant in Yorkshire.
How did we get here? Well, we're friends who met at Yorkshire Television. We both worked as researchers and producers on documentaries and while we were doing all the worthy stuff on location, we were also checking out worthy stuff for our stomachs: deli's, specialist producers, farmers' markets and usually finding somewhere good to eat or drink, a Guangdong market for sharks' lips, the best bargain curry house in Bradford or somewhere with Michelin stars in Paris.
In the mid 90s we turned pleasure into business. Jill wrote a guide to the best food in Yorkshire and has written for the Times, Guardian, Square Meal, Olive and Restaurant. She has contributed to numerous Time Out travel guides and wrote the Time Out Guide to the Lake District. She is a member of the Guild of Food Writers and the Guild of Travel Writers.
Mandy is an inspector for Alastair Sawday Guides and knows all the best pubs, inns and boutique hotels in the north of England. She's covered cafes and restaurants for the Sunday Times, the Guardian and interviewed chefs for the publican's trade paper the Morning Advertiser.
The north is 'our patch'. Mandy was born in Derbyshire, lived in Sheffield, worked in Leeds and lives in the Pennines. Jill was born in Lancashire, schooled in Yorkshire and now lives with her husband and daughter in York. At weekends we usually head for our boltholes on the Yorkshire coast. So, one way and another, we've got the region covered.
Our Logo: We are very proud that Paul Czainski agreed to design our logo. We think he's done a terrific job. Paul is a friend of ours, he's also one of the most sought after specialist artist/decorators in the UK and his murals, trompe l'oeil paintings, graining, marbling, fabric and wallpaper designs grace the homes of his many celebrity clients, from rock stars to royalty including work for the likes of Mick Jagger and Roman Abramovich. You can read more about Paul on www.czainski.com
Squidbeak is all about finding the best places to eat and stay in Yorkshire. We write as we find and report honestly on what we find. We celebrate the best and if a place doesn't come up to scratch, it doesn't get in.
We visit annonymously and pay for the vast majority of meals we review for Squidbeak. From time to time we accept a complimentary meal on condition that we write about it as we find it and we declare it at the end of our review.
If you would like to be reviewed for Squidbeak you can contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
A small advert on our eat and stay pages linked to your own website costs just £20 a month. If you would like to advertise with us, you can contact us on email@example.com.
‘If you want the inside track on where to eat and buy delicious food in Yorkshire and the hidden gem B&Bs across God’s Own County, Squidbeak should be your first port of call. Put together by two professional foodies who write colourfully but sensibly, I haven’t found anything to better it’ ... The Guardian