Médoc, as an AOC (Appellation d'origine contrôlée), is arguably the most famous red wine district in the world.  It is home to many of the greatest and most well-known vineyards of Bordeaux. It stretches north-west from the city of Bordeaux with the Gironde estuary to the east. The vineyards extend up to eight miles from the river and run for about 50 miles northwards. It is a surprisingly dull landscape, with the best land found on gravelly outcrops. The most northerly, low-lying vineyards are classified as Bas-Médoc (English: Low Médoc), though this term is not permitted on any label.  Those on higher ground, closer to the city of Bordeaux, are entitled to the Haut-Médoc appellation. Within that appellation, there are further communal or village appellations, namely Listrac and Moulis, and the four great names of St. Estèphe, Pauillac, St Julien and Margaux. As a rule of thumb, the greatest wines are made at those properties closest to the river.

With few exceptions, in Médoc, there is only red wine produced, and no white wine has the right to be called Médoc.

Noted châteaux from the Bas-Médoc: Châteaux Le Boscq, Châteaux Patache d'Aux, Châteaux Potensac, Châteaux la Tour de By, Châteaux La Tour Haut-Caussan, Châteaux La Tour-St-Bonnet, Châteaux Verdignan, Châteaux Rolland de By.

Noted châteaux from the Haut-Médoc : Châteaux La Lagune, Châteaux Cantemerle, Châteaux d’Agassac, Châteaux Belgrave, Châteaux Camensac, Châteaux Charmail, Châteaux Cissac, Châteaux Citran, Châteaux Lanessan, Châteaux Liversan, Châteaux du Moulin Rouge, Châteaux Sociando-Mallet, Châteaux La Tour Carnet, Châteaux Verdignan, Châteaux d’Arche, Châteaux Beaumont, Châteaux Lamothe-Bergeron.