If you're sick of paying top prices for French wine in the UK, the place to go is France, whether to vineyards, maisons de vin or supermarkets. Rachel Bridge has useful advice on how to plan your shopping trip...

The rough track winding its way up to the crumbling château. The sun beating down on the vines. The idea of touring France’s vineyards with an empty car boot and a wine guide to hand is an alluring prospect. There can be little to match the thrill of standing in a cool cellar tasting a glass of wine with the person who has lovingly nurtured it from grape to bottle.