Historic Tahoma Market reopens after multi-year renovation

TAHOMA, Calif. — Famous for more than just delicious sandwiches and rich in history, the former PDQ Market and Deli, recently reopened after an intensive two-year renovation.

“The Market has received a facelift, but the heart, soul and sandwiches remain the same,” said Constance Churchman, whose family owns the market.

The Tahoma Market opened their doors in January.

The deli continues to bake bread daily while also serving breakfast sandwiches, pastries, pizza that complements a full coffee bar using locally roasted beans from Truckee called Sierra Pacific Coffee.

The market carries essential, everyday groceries along with a selection of fresh produce, liquor, wine and beer.

“We make it a point to try and support local business,” Churchman said.

Tahoma Market originally opened in 1943 serving the community and guests of the Tahoma Hotel, where overnight room rate was just $4.

The market has been there since 1943.

The market offered food, “fountain lunches” and it even housed a Western Union Station electric telegraph to communicate with the outside world. Guests would arrive by both car and boat at the near beach. Churchman’s grandparents, Stanley and Carolyn Hiller, owned the property since the 1970s.

Known for their delicious sandwiches, the chain PDQ Market and Deli closed when the owners left the area.

The chain in Tahoma was the last remaining one west of the Mississippi River.

Churchman’s family was faced with a decision to either close the market or run it themselves.

While the family had no experience running a restaurant, they decided to “buck up” and renovate after hearing from the community that the market was a “local treasure.”

Two years later, the market opened again under the name Tahoma Market.

While the inside was completely gutted and transformed into an open, airy space, the owners tried to keep as much of the Tahoe aesthetic and historic charm as possible. They also added items to the deli along with a full coffee bar.

The Tahoma Market Deli is also serving pizza for dinner.

“Everyone has been loving the sandwiches,” said Churchman.

They make daily bread for the sandwiches with choices between white, wheat, cheese, jalapeno cheese, pesto, and garlic. The sandwiches are also big, being a full 8 inches, cut in half and completely stuffed. The deli is also now offering breakfast sandwiches.

“We really love feedback and are constantly listening to the community,” said Churchman.

She said they are always updating their inventory to carry what those in the community want to see at the market.

Tahoma Market Deli’s house-made sandwiches.

The Tahoma Market had a soft opening in mid January.

“We just posted it on social media,” said Churchman and added that the turnout was way bigger than they expected and since then, they have been busy.

“The locals have been so nice, and visitors have been as well,” she said. “It’s been a blast.”

Churchman said they were lucky to open well into the pandemic because they learned and prepared to use the safest operating protocols before opening.

“We are feeling so lucky — the community has been so positive and shown so much support,” she said. “We love our community, and we are thrilled to be back in action.”

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Cheyanne Neuffer is a staff writer for the Tahoe Daily Tribune, a sister publication of the Sierra Sun.

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