The murderer is a critic who gives favorable reviews (puffs) to a group of restaurateurs who pay him for the privilege of not being panned. One of them threatens to blow the scheme wide open, so the critic poisons him with the toxin from a Japanese puff-fish known as "fugu" (a real delicacy) by injecting a bottle of wine with the envenomed needle-tip of a carbon-dioxide opener (or rather arranging for the victim to do it himself).
For those who might think, that television productions could never touch the glory of Hollywood productions, this Columbo episode is one of the best examples to doubt. Even Columbosists, I think, would agree, that this is one of the best episodes of the confused detective and the best thing about it, it's absolutely timeless!
There's not much to say about Peter Falk's performance... GREAT as in each minute, we've seen of Columbo. But fortunately, the producers were able to capture an outstanding guest star: Louis Jourdan. While many musical stars, who had problems to get engagements after the breakdown of the studio system, were featured as guests in Columbo episodes, Jourdan probably gives one of the most outstanding performances. (Sure, he wasn't one of those who had problems to get other engagements) I also recommend this episode to those people, who know Jourdan only as Gigi's lover Gaston. No, he was able to do much more!