Le Cheri, the romantic French restaurant just off Rittenhouse Square with a great courtyard garden, is closing for good later this month. Owners Pierre and Charlotte Calmels opened the eatery in early 2014 at 251 S. 18th Street, inside the Philadelphia Art Alliance building, with chef Pierre Calmels, originally from Lyon, cooking French bistro fare. Its last day will be Sunday, May 27. The restaurant will close after dinner service.
The Calmels also own Bibou, a BYOB in South Philadelphia that’s one of Eater Philly’s 38 essential restaurants. They opened the snug Bibou in 2009; Le Cheri is much bigger. Pierre Calmels previously worked for Daniel Bouloud in New York and spend several years at George Perrier’s acclaimed Le Bec Fin in Philly, and has been nominated for a James Beard Award for best chef in the mid-Atlantic region multiple times.
Bibou remains open, serving Wednesdays through Saturdays — the Calmels are saying Le Cheri’s closure might allow them to add occasional extra days at Bibou.
Meanwhile, Charlotte Calmels is also working for D’Artagnan, a high-end food purveyor with a focus on meat and poultry.