POSTED ON October 26, 2009 | IN Tasting Rooms | BY Joe Becerra

What would Gary Vaynerchuk be doing speaking to a class of 8th grade students at V Sattui winery? First, a little about Gary for readers of this blog who have not heard of him. Gary Vaynerchuk just published “Crush It,” a book about how to cash in on your passion by using social media tools. After one week of its release, the book is #2 on the New York Times bestseller list. It all began for Gary when he started Wine Library TV, some 800 video segments ago. In most of the segments he rants and raves about wines with a totally different approach to wine speak that almost everyone gets. Gary has vaulted himself into the wine and business world because of his passion and by broadcasting his message through the use of social media tools. Lately, he has been taking his message mainstream with appearances on CNN News, the Today Show, CNBC News and many others. Gary has become quite the celebrity and a phenomenon.

Gary Vaynerchuk at V. Sattui

Gary Vaynerchuk at V. Sattui

So what brought Gary Vee, as many call him, to speak to the 8th class of Robert Louis Stevenson Middle School students this past Saturday? These students were assigned to read “Crush It” as part of a career awareness unit. Gary was in the Bay Area to promote his book, and because V Sattui has adopted this nearby middle school as part of the Napa Valley Vintner’s “Adopt a School” program, the winery made arrangements for Gary to meet and speak to these students. It all added up to a one-hour session with Gary providing what was essentially a pep talk to the students. Gary Vee is terrific at motivating and talking up how social media can help with a business. Being a former middle school teacher myself, I thought Gary took a very good approach to addressing the students. He is a celebrity in the eyes of these students so his message to “Live your passion” takes on more meaning. One important thing he stressed was “Use the social media tools, but be careful how you use them. Once your message is out there, it will never go away.”

Gary Vee stuck around the winery for the next couple of hours signing books for visitors who were in the tasting room. This brought in an extra crowd at what has to be one of the most visited wineries in the Napa Valley. The best thing about the crowd that day, the tasting room fees for Saturday went to the Robert Louis Stevenson Middle School as part of the “Adopt a School” program. Congrats to V. Sattui for adopting Robert Louis Stevenson Middle School.


  1. Annie Sorensen says

    There are many comments out on the web about Gary and how often/hard he self-promotes, which is too bad because I feel like very few truly understand how much he really CARES. Cares for the wine industry, cares for his customers/clients, cares for everyone. This story is great, the perfect proof.

    Totally agree with Dave, the keynotes on are arguably the best ‘GaryVee’ content out there.

    Go, be inspired!


  2. David Jenyns says

    Love Gary Vaynerchuck – his book arrived today. Might I suggest checking out all the keynotes on his website.

    Be careful though, they’re addictive and you’ll get really pumped.

    Dave Jenyns