Naming a best surfboard maker is like heralding a No. 1 sushi chef. It's possible, but as Jonathan Gold might tell you, the best sushi chef is the one who gets to know your tastes over time. A board “shaper” is an artist and engineer. But most of all he's a surfing therapist. He knows roughly how much you weigh, where you ride, your level of rip and, of course, all your “issues.” You have lots of surfboard makers to choose from in the region, such as the superstars who bookend Southern California, Rusty in San Diego and Channel Islands in Carpinteria. But in L.A. you really can't get better than Anderson Surfboards in Marina del Rey. In 23-year veteran shaper Scott Anderson, you'll find a craftsman who knows the waves of Santa Monica Bay and Malibu like no other. While you probably see more of his foam-and-fiberglass artwork at Surfrider State Beach than anywhere, many a Venice and Santa Monica local claims Anderson as his own. And that's key: You want a ride that knows its subject. In this case the patient is the urban shores of L.A. 4065 Glencoe Ave., Marina del Rey. (310) 578-5860,

—Dennis Romero

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