"No liquor, no limes," said the bartender at the downtown wine bar La Carafe (813 Congress, 713-229-9399). The joint has always been one of my favorites, but what's a poor cocktail columnist supposed to do here? I settled for a weird variation of wine spritzer that combined South African Semillon and a California Cabernet with traditional club soda. At midnight, the place was jumping with happy couples out quaffing bottles of wine. The giant candles on either side of the gold-plated cash register looked like wax glaciers, a warm breeze was coming through the front door, and someone had loaded the jukebox with some vintage Dylan. Even my drink wasn't half bad.