He's got bona fide Charleston connections: He married a gal from here and visits his in-laws often. He's participated in Charleston Wine + Food in the past, and when his cookbook — A Turn in the New South — came out in 2011, he made frequent stops here on his book tour, cooking a special dinner with Ken Vedrinski at Trattoria Lucca. He returned in January to prepare a feast for the Friends of the Wine + Food Festival. By March, he was back for the festival itself, and come April he'll be back again for the Dirt Fair, helping raise money for local food programs. We gotta say, the Top Chef master and regularly appearing Top Chef judge is a personable, approachable guy who makes fabulous food. We'd be happy to see him open an outpost here in town, but that doesn't seem likely. Instead, we'll award him honorary Charleston chef status.