Whether it’s the comforting aroma of fresh-baked bread or the creative composition of fresh produce and perfectly seasoned meats, there’s something undeniably enticing about Surf City sandwich shops. Great for breakfast, lunch and dinner, restaurants from Main Street to the north side of town are layering flavorful ingredients on slices of thick, crunchy bread in the most innovative of ways. In honor of National Sandwich Day on Nov. 3, sample the offerings at these five Huntington Beach eateries that elevate the tried-and-true staple to an extraordinary culinary experience. 

Sandwich

Photo credits: Burnt Crumbs 

Sessions West Coast Deli

After a surf session, visitors may work up an appetite as big as the wave they just rode in to shore. Enter Sessions West Coast Deli, conveniently located just across the street from the pier. Fresh bread is brought in daily from OC Baking Co., serving as an artisanal base for a slew of from-scratch sauces and locally grown produce. Breakfast and lunch options abound, but you can’t go wrong with the award-winning Summer Zephyr, featuring tender slices of mozzarella, juicy tomato and arugula drizzled with balsamic vinegar. Wash it all down with a cold brew or a craft beer on tap. 414 Pacific Coast Hwy., 714-594-3899, sessionswcd.com

Sessions

Photo credits: Sessions West Coast Deli 

Subculture Extraordinary Sandwiches

Dutch Crunch bread makes this small shop a mainstay on any “best sandwiches” list. The speckled, crackly top creates a satisfying crunch before teeth sink into the dense white bread that encases ingredients slathered in a housemade garlic spread. Top picks here include the turkey, salami and arugula Saxman and the Godfather Italian sub with hot salami, provolone and sundried tomato pesto—after the base ingredients, customize however you’d like with extras including lettuce, tomato, pepperoncinis and onion. 7862 Warner Ave., 714-847-1113, subculturehb.com

Subculture

Photo credits: @bestfood_aroundtheworld 

Burnt Crumbs

Imaginations runs wild at this small shop inside Pacific City’s Lot 579 food hall. Customers are die-hard advocates of the 11-Day Pastrami, a hearty offering with thick-cut meat piled high atop fresh rye bread with housemade sauerkraut providing a distinct kick. Made for Instagram, however, is the trendy spaghetti sandwich, which takes the familiar flavors of a spaghetti dinner between two rich, buttery slices of garlic bread—don’t forget the marinara! 21058 Pacific Coast Hwy., 714-374-0777, burntcrumbs.com

Burnt crumbs

Photo credits: Burnt Crumbs

Bruxie

Fried chicken and waffles are the stuff of foodie dreams. This creative eatery serves up the classic combo in five handheld variations, ranging from chili honey chicken on a bed of slaw to a maple-glazed breast with Sriracha and a sunny side-up egg. All sandwiches are served on a crispy waffle and can be enjoyed in the open-air space overlooking Fifth Street. 180 5th St., 657-215-3559, bruxie.com 

Bruxie

Huckleberry’s Famous Sandwiches

The mom-and-pop shop is a local favorite, known for its broasted chicken dinners. Huckleberry’s is no slouch in the sandwich department, earning its name with grinders like the towering club with three slices of lightly toasted bread stuffed with ham, bacon, turkey, cheese. It sticks to the basics and does them well, with piping hot sandwiches such the teriyaki beef alongside cold classics customizable with bread options like squaw and sourdough. 15891 Gothard St., 714-894-2825

Huckleberry

Photos credits: Huckleberry's Famous Sandwiches