Being a longtime devotee of the simple waiter’s knife corkscrew, I was initially skeptical about The Rabbit corkscrew, which seemed like just another highdesign gimmick. But it works really well: The Rabbit is easy to grip and align, it uncorks a bottle with one sweeping pull of the lever, and it disengages the cork with another. It’s especially handy if you’re opening a number of bottles for a party, or if you’re timid about opening just one for fear of breaking the-cork. Professional Cutlery Direct (800/859-6994; www. cutlery .com) sells the Rabbit for $80.
If uncorking a bottle of Champagne feels a little like holding a loaded pistol, consider the Perfect Pop Champagne opener. It fits right over the foil and wire cage that cover the Champagne cork; all you need do is loosen the wire cage first. The Perfect Pop’s comforting heft and finger-friendly fluted surface let you twist the cork from a bottle of bubbly safely and comfortably—and well in time to watch the ball drop at midnight. It costs about $40; call 518/398-6617 or order online at www .perfectpop.com.