Paffuto brings back Chef Camels for three special cassoulet experiences

Pierre Calmels is pictured.

Last December, Paffuto opened up a brick and mortar in the former home of Bibou (1009 S. 8th St.) in Bella Vista. Owners and co-chefs Daniel Griffiths, Jake Loeffler, and Sam Kalku operate the space as a daytime café, offering breakfast and lunch every Wednesday through Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., but this week also holds a blast from the past for the new venture. 

According to a release, Pierre Calmels, the renowned, award-winning former Bibou chef and owner, will be returning to his old space to cook for two nights (and an extra day) of cassoulet on March 18 and 19. The third day (March 20) will see cassoulet orders available for pickup for those who can’t get one of the limited seats.

“Cassoulet is known to be a perfect winter dish, and there is no one in Philly known to make better cassoulet than Chef Calmels, so we thought this was a perfect way to celebrate the end of the season while also paying homage to the restaurant space we took over,” said Griffiths in a statement.

Paffuto is located at 1009 S. 8th St. in Bella Vista.Mike Prince

Griffiths continued: “We cannot explain just how much of an honor it is to welcome such a talented and prestigious chef into Paffuto. We are beyond excited to share our kitchen with Pierre. His cassoulet was celebrated in Philly by so many people for so many years, and we hope we can help some people relive the Bibou days that they once loved so much.”

The cassoulet events are BYOB (though Paffuto has a partnership with Mural City Wines on normal days of operations) and the $95 pre-fixe menu will have two seatings available for Philadelphians with a lean amount of tickets at 5:30 and 7:45 p.m. 

On Monday and Tuesday, March 18 and 19, Calmels will join the Paffuto team in the kitchen and celebrate the final days of winter. 

“Sure, why not,” Calmels responded in a statement when asked if he would be open to joining the Paffuto team for a cassoulet night. “It’ll be fun to get back in my former kitchen, cook some familiar foods, and connect with some old friends.”

The dinner will be served in the space’s dining room, and there are an additional three bar stools that face the kitchen available as well. The meal will be comprised of an unlimited family-style cassoulet (featuring duck leg confit, homemade pork sausage, bacon, and tarbais beans), and a special collaborative dessert.

As the release also notes, reservations are now available on a first-come, first-served basis via email (, as Paffuto is still in the process of setting up its reservation system. Paffuto asks prospective guests to email their desired date, time, and party size. There will be very limited tables of 2 or 4 in addition to those individual counter seats. 

But as mentioned before, the team at the space is also offering the tasty dish to go the next day (March 20.) Pickups will be available from 3 to 6 p.m. at Paffuto for those who placed a pre-order. 


Those who can’t partake in the nights of cassoulet can also opt to try some of Paffuto’s other treats during the day that span five sandwiches, including four regular, breakfast and lunch options, and one weekly special, on top of a plethora of desserts that span cannolis, tiramisu, biscotti, cookies, maritozzi, and more. 

Additionally, coffee beans will be sourced from Elixr Coffee Roasters, and bread (including hoagie rolls and kaiser rolls) will be provided by Sarcone’s Bakery. Local provisions will also be available, including selections from Fishtown Pickle Project, Mural City Cellars, and more, blending the idea that this community spot truly reaps the fruits of its locale.

For more information on Paffuto, visit