• Posted Jan 3, 2023

You've got Needs, We've got Cheese

Please welcome Sisters in Cheese as BIKEIOWA's newest sponsor.

Sisters in Cheese (SiC) is a small, woman-owned business in Madrid and founded in 2017. We began our journey by providing beautiful Grazing Boards, Boxes and Tables, catering everything from small, intimate gatherings to weddings and large corporate events.

In the years since opening, we've continued providing our customers with all of their Grazing needs. In addition, we now have a carryout Breakfast Menu, Artisan Beverages, and a Grab and Go Cooler stocked with fresh, delicious meals, sandwiches, and beyond. We've also opened a retail section in our shop in Madrid, filled with beautifully-curated goods, many of which are local and handmade.

VIEW MENU (pdf) For pricing on our Grazing Boards, Boxes & Tables, send email us at or check out the price list.



Q: Who is the Owner?
A: Chelsea Johnsen

Q: Chelsea, what is your Background and Specialty?
I was born and raised in Madrid, moved to Des Moines and then Ames for a few years and eventually, my husband and I bought my childhood home in rural Madrid. Sisters in Cheese started in 2017 when I had a dream one night that my sister-in-law and I had a charcuterie board business called Sisters in Cheese. We laughed about the ridiculous name for a while and then I decided to move forward with making it a reality. We started with Grazing Boards, then opened a brick and mortar restaurant in 2019. Obviously, 2020 came along and forced us to rethink our plan. SiC eventually morphed into what it is now: catering for Grazing Boards; everything from 1-2 serving Mini Grazers all the way up to 8'+ Grazing Tables (our longest table so far has been 24'), Carryout Breakfast and our Grab and Go Cooler with tons of fresh, unique items, plus retail section featuring many local makers.

Q: Are there cyclists on your team
A: I dabble, as do most of my staff -- SiC is located just a block away from the High Trestle Trail in Madrid. My husband, Dan (the "Mister in Cheese") spends a lot of time cycling. He loves distance rides on gravel and mountain biking best, but of course, loves our trails in Iowa and beyond.

Q: How does SiC can help cyclists?
As mentioned, we're just a block off of the High Trestle Trail in Madrid and we have spent a lot of time creating menu items that are more closely-catered to cyclists. We love using fresh ingredients, making snacks that pack a lot of protein AND flavor, and are easy to throw in a bag and take on the ride. We also try to stock our retail section with a ton of localitems that arebike-centric or feature images of the Trestle Trail Bridge. It gives locals as well as people visiting from out-of-state/country an opportunity to buy themselves or a loved one a unique gift related to their unique trip to our state and trail. We understand that the trail has given those of us in Madrid a lot of opportunities that we didn't have before and are really grateful to the cycling community.

Q: What is your Mission/Vision?
A: Our motto from the very jump has been "Serving Good Food to Good People" and we stand by that. We love the idea of people gathering around food and sharing a drink and a laugh and a story and the sense of community that forms. Personally, I am on a mission to continue to improve the smaller communities for ourselves and for future generations. Having businesses and attractions to be proud of and that you want to support is a huge part in that.

Q: What are your Annual Events/Flagship Events?
A: We're hugely involved in Madrid's Labor Day Celebration (Friday-Monday of Labor Day weekend, yearly) as well as our town's Holiday Celebration (it was on Monday, 12/5 and is usually the first Monday of December every year). We also host shopping nights with complementary drinks and snacks (plus food available for purchase) and are involved in every Locally Grown Showcase, a local makers market at Snus Hill Winery four times a year.

Q: What would you say to the Iowa Cycling Community?
A: Again, I can't say it enough, I am so grateful for the folks who utilize the Trestle Trail and who support the businesses within the small communities on the trail. Having grown up in Madrid, I've seen it go through some tough times, along with some of the other small towns on the trail. Getting to watch the revitalization of our communities and see the impact it has had on our citizens in the short time it's been there has been awe-inspiring. So basically, to the cycling community and to the tourists using our beautiful trail, THANK YOU. We're forever-grateful.

Q: How can cheese lovers contact you?
Phone: 515-795-5160 (call only during open hours. no text option)
Address: 203 S. State St., Madrid, IA 50156 MAP





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