This is Highly Recommend, a column dedicated to our very opinionated editors’ favorite things to eat, drink, and buy.
I’ve got a small collection of matchbooks. You could call it a problem. I call it a hobby. I just love them for the designs—especially the ones that are metallic and loud. My girlfriend is the opposite; she’s got a cleaner, simpler aesthetic. But the one matchbook we can both agree on is the one from Reception Bar in New York City.
Owner Katie Rue opts for an oversize format with matchsticks in colors that pop and three different vibrant designs as the backdrop. “The backgrounds are actual images of Korean stamps with garden imagery that are zoomed in to become abstract,” Rue says. They’re are a nod to her Korean heritage as well as a natural extension of the bar’s serene secret garden vibes. Soju is infused with ingredients like Korean green pepper and taro. Plants sit in every corner. A glass façade lends a kind of greenhouse look.
As a designer myself, I love how she took this motif and ran with it. It’s why every time I visit, I run home with a few of these matchbooks in my pocket.
Go there: Reception Bar
Originally Appeared on Bon Appétit