Toko vineyard - which means "Stone" in Huarpe - is located at
4,000’ elevation, in Paraje Altamira. The wines of Zaha, which
means "heart" in this native Indian language of Mendoza, comes
from this vineyard. These wines reflect the heart and soul of
the privileged terroir of Paraje Altamira.
This vineyard has a highly diverse soil profile created by alluvial activity that has left a system of multiple patches of different soil profiles throughout the area.
Within the 7.5 hectares of vineyards there are four different soil types. To the north soils are silty; to the south there are areas of coarse-grained sand. There are also some rocky limestone driven soils and silty soils with light gravel distributed throughout the estate.
Each of these soils provides its own range of aromas, flavors and textures to the fruit growing there.
La Consulta is the birthplace of Teho Malbec, the cornerstone of
Jeff Mausbach and Alejandro Sejanovich's dream.
After planting the Toko vineyard in Altamira, Alejandro and Jeff put their life savings together to buy a small old vine Malbec vineyard in La Consulta. Although it had been abandoned for a long time, it held a treasure that its new owners would know how to capitalize. They named it "Tomal", which means “ancient” in the native Indian language of Mendoza.
It is an estate planted in 1940, a field blend of old Malbec plants (French grape) that had survived abandonment. There was Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Syrah, Merlot, Tempranillo; even some white Semillon grapes.
For six years Alejandro set about recovering this vineyard. After years of abandonment there were at least 30% dead plants. A very extensive “liar” program was implemented, in which shoots from neighboring vines are used to replace dead plants.
Winemaker / Owner
ALEJANDRO SEJANOVICH is recognized as one of Argentina's most talented and experienced winemakers. Born in Mendoza, he was surrounded by vineyards since childhood, which made him discover his vocation when he was thirteen. Graduated with a Gold Medal in agricultural engineering in Mendoza and with a Masters Degree in enology at the University of Montpellier, Alejandro Sejanovich became part of Catena Zapata's group of winemakers. From the vineyard management of that company, he obtained in-depth knowledge of the great diversity in grape production throughout the country. He gained experience in the knowledge of microclimates and the influence of the soil on the vine and wine behavior. There, together with Alejandro Vigil, from the research department, he discovered areas of Mendoza where new vineyards were planted and where the origin of places such as Altamira and Gualtallary were traced. Alejandro was always paying attention to each vineyard, each plant. From his beginnings at Catena Zapata he knew that the secret behind a great wine lies in the earth, right there, under his feet. It is no surprise that all these years of research and constant work have made him one of the top ten winemakers in South America, according to Decanter Magazine. At harvest time you can see how his hands are stained from his constant contact with the bunches and berries for ripeness and to determine the optimal date for harvesting. Noting is taken for granted. He monitors every detail at each stage of the winemaking process. His greatest virtue lies in the perfect combination among vision, knowledge, hard work and sensitivity. That is Alejandro Sejanovich's trademark.
Commercial Director / Owner
JEFF MAUSBACH was born in Omaha, a small town in the State of Nebraska, USA. When he was 18 years old, he moved to Chicago where he worked in restaurants in order to pay for his studies. This experience allowed him to discover the symbiotic relationship between food and wine. He then worked as a sommelier for a few years which definitely consolidated his passion for wine. His relationship with Argentina came about through his partner Veronica, whom he met in 1992, when he was staying in a small guesthouse across from the Vatican while he was backpacking across Europe. Their mutual spark later led them on a trip to Southern Italy and the Greek islands. Jeff began postgraduate studies in International Relations at the University of Chicago and Veronica returned to Argentina. Since his first trip to Argentina in 1993, Jeff has been attracted to the culture, people, food and lifestyle of this “Paris-like” place in South America. Jeff and Veronica spent the next five years living between Buenos Aires and Chicago. In 1996, when he finished his studies in the United States, the couple decided to settle permanently in Argentina. His passion for wine made him pursue a career in the emerging Argentine wine export sector. In 1997 Jeff began to work with Nicolas Catena, an icon of the wine industry. At Bodega Catena Zapata he spent the next thirteen years developing international activities, traveling the world to teach about Argentine Malbec. Jeff has become an important ambassador and communicator of Argentine wine in the world.
JORGE CROTTA born and raised in Mendoza, he graduated with honors from Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, the most important business school in Mendoza. He began his professional career at Salentein, where he worked for three years. Then at Catena Zapata he spent seven years developing international markets. In 2013 he joined Alejandro Sejanovich and Jeff Mausbach's projects as a partner to be part of the management and winemaking team.
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