Over the past few months a young culinary critic rose to fame. He is a first grader in Fairfield, CT named Leo Kelly, but many of his fans know him as The Shirley Temple King. I had the opportunity to interview Leo over FaceTime the other day and I’m here to share all the details on his favorite local spots, big college plans, funny food combinations, dream Shirley Temple date, and a very important cause.

The Perfect Spot

The Shirley Temple King has been very active on social media to help spread joy during the current pandemic. I for one always smile after watching his videos. He’s kept a very positive attitude during this difficult time. I asked him where he would go to get a Shirley Temple once quarantine ends. He felt that it was a very tough question since so many restaurants have delicious Shirley Temples but ultimately decided that Artisan was at the top of his list. He loves sitting outside and enjoying the delicious drink with his family. Just like the Fairfield Spoonies, Leo loves to support his local eateries!

Staying Local

Leo and I bonded over our favorite spots in Fairfield and both agreed that we love Local. We’re both very grateful to be a part of the Fairfield community and Leo even confessed that he’d love to go to Fairfield University when he’s old enough. While I’m a tad biased, I think it would be an excellent fit. He especially likes that if he went to Fairfield U he could still sleep in his own bed and stay close to his mom! 

Pizza Pizza Pizza

Since I was in the presence of a Shirley Temple expert I had to ask Leo what the best food pairing is with the scrumptious red drink. "Pizza!" he answered with confidence. He elaborated that his favorite local pizza place is Colony Pizza and his go-to topping is cheese. He was quite surprised when I said my favorite topping is pineapple but he said he’d be willing to try it. He’s even open to trying cherries on pizza but draws the line at chili peppers.

Funny Food Combos

This launched a discussion on funny food pairings. He agreed with his mom that he is a bit of a picky eater but can be adventurous from time to time. He told me all about his love for Nutella and how he even puts it on his French toast! He also revealed that his aunt dips her Goldfish in yogurt, which he thinks is crazy! The closest I could come to that was dipping French fries in ice cream— Leo was a bit more open to that combination.

Dream Dinner

I asked Leo the big question that we all want to know…if you could have a Shirley Temple with anyone— real or fictional, who would it be? He declared that he would dine with SpongeBob and Captain Underpants. He noted that he’s never seen any cherries in the sea so SpongeBob would probably have his drink with seaweed and pineapple. Captain Underpants on the other hand would probably have his with six cherries as red as his cape— the Shirley Temple King recommends three cherries but recognizes that Captain Underpants isn’t the best listener and likes to take things to the extreme. Either way, Leo thinks this would be the dream dinner!

cherry, sweet, berry, sweet cherry, juice
Jocelyn Hsu

Saving The World

Fans of The Shirley Temple King know that he prefers his drinks in glass cups with reusable straws. I was quite impressed with his efforts to be environmentally conscious so I had to ask why this cause is so important to him. He had the perfect answer! “Because then the plastic cups and straws will go in the garbage and then to the dump and then underwater. Then underwater creatures, like sea turtles, could choke on them and then that hurts the food chain and would then hit us. So yeah, I love Shirley Temples and animal rescue!”

There you have it folks, a Shirley Temple critic and a humanitarian! Leo Kelly is on his way to do big things!