San Diego and action sports go together like peas and carrots. Pro surfers, snowboarders and skateboarders have flocked to our city to enjoy the perfect weather and ideal location. It just so happens that Southern California is home to the majority of action sports brands and magazines, and this has brought professional athletes to our town for decades.
Not only are mainstream companies such as Adidas and Cobra Golf located in Carlsbad, the North County community is a hub for skate brands including Zero, DGK, TransWorld media and Fallen Footwear. Closer to central San Diego, we have one of skateboarding’s largest distributors, Tum Yeto, located right off Commercial Avenue. It distributes the wildly popular skateboard brand Alien Workshop, which is owned by Rob Dyrdek of MTV fame. With resident action sport heroes Danny Way, Tony Hawk, Shawn White and dozens of other pros wandering around town, you’re bound to run into some of these guys on occasion. Here are a couple spots that are owned by local pros where you’re more than likely to catch the owners hanging out or serving pints to smiling customers.
Fish 101 is a little restaurant in Leucadia owned by a few local action sports athletes. Pro surfers Taylor Knox and Josh Kerr have invested in the local eatery and are often found dining and rubbing elbows with the locals. The small, fish-inspired restaurant has gained popularity because of its delicious dishes and incredibly fresh fish (check its Instagram feed to see what they caught in the morning). When you visit, expect a line and crowded dining area, but also expect amazing fish tacos and friendly faces.
1468 N. Coast Highway 101, Encinitas
Saint Archer Brewery in Miramar is another action sports venture owned by many professional athletes including San Diego skateboarders Brian Hansen, Chris Cole and snowboarder Todd Richards. The product is one that is familiar to San Diegans: craft beer. On almost any day of the week you can find one of the brand ambassadors pouring a pint to a stoked fan and talking shop with whoever is hanging around the tasting room. Pair that up with their famous brew master Yiga Miyashiro’s recipes and you’ll have a fun afternoon waiting for you.
9550 Distribution Ave., San Diego
The last place on the list is Cardiff eatery Sambazon.
After bringing its brand to market, the owners of Sambazon were having difficulty getting the word out about their delicious super food, acai. They turned to professional skateboarder Bob Burnquist and world famous surfer Rob Machado to help spread the word and 10 years later, the Sambazon brand and acai are household names. You can find Burnquist and Machado almost daily when they are in town stopping by the small storefront, refueling with the signature acai bowls. Not much is better after a long day surfing, I promise you.
2031 San Elijo Ave., Cardiff by the Sea
As a lifelong San Diegan, Ken Lewis has surfing and ocean life in his DNA. A 30-year surfer himself, Lewis has worked in the surf and skate industry for most of his career. Send him your thoughts about the surfing world to firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Instagram @hanger18.