No single subject in the world of wine could be more current or compelling than that of Champagne. The comprehensive new 2000 Champagnes by Richard Juhlin delivers on both counts (Train/Scala, $60; 800-252-5231).
A Maiden's Tale
As one of California's greatest red wines, the Cabernet blend called Harlan Estate has had few peers--until now. A new Harlan wine, The Maiden, made from the same Cabernet blend, is debuting this month (707-944-1441).
Chic and Sleek
Baccarat's latest line of glassware, Les Simplissimes, draws from designs of earlier decades, like the Thirties and the Seventies. Yet the look of the collection is completely contemporary, as two pitchers prove. The "Janus" is $450; the "Calypso" is $600 (800-777-0100).
Grapes of Wrath
French grape growers did what most of us only dream of doing: they sued the national weather service for inaccurate forecasts, claiming that its erroneous reports ruined last year's harvest. The question for this fall is, If the weather's bad, who's going to tell them?
As if it isn't hard enough to keep up with new wines from "old" countries like Italy and France, this year three "new" countries have put their wines on the world market. Look for Merlot from Mexico, Uruguayan Sauvignon Blanc and even Chardonnay from Tasmania. Can Barbera from Bolivia be far behind?