Lab 44 – Hidden Gem by Hemburg Terrein

   

Lab 44 is a restaurant located in the Hemburg Terrain. It is housed in what was once the laboratory for the ammunition factory. The monumental building pays homage to its history and is styled as a modern, industrial-chic dining space. I find it incredibly charming. With its high ceilings, minimalist decor, and exposed original walls, Lab 44 offers a unique ambience in the heart of Zaandam.

 

The ample dining room can accommodate large groups but does tend to get loud when packed. While the setting may not be ideal for a quiet romantic dinner, it provides a lively experience for more social gatherings.

Table of Contents

Let's discuss the food.

Goat Cheese Starter - Lab 44

The food at Lab 44 was flavorful and delicious overall. The menu offers a small variety of options, including pizzas.

For a starter, we tried the pumpkin goat and the Burrata. Both were pleasant surprises, with twists that made them stand out from standard offerings of goat cheese salads and Burrata and tomatoes.

The goat cheese was twisted with pumpkin puree, which added a slightly acidic contrast to the creamy goat cheese.

The Burrata was served on a bed of dried tomatoes, which were packed with flavour and complimented the creaminess of the Burrata.

Burrata Starter at Lab 44

We both had the Bavette for the main course, served with Jus, French Fries, and sour coleslaw. It was perfectly cooked!

The French Fries were crispy and plentiful, and the jus was flavourful. I would have liked to see more coleslaw, as the sourness was a good palate cleanser between the fries and meat.

Based on the dishes we tried, the food clearly met my expectations of flavorful twists on fan favourites. Everything was fresh and cooked perfectly. I recommend Lab 44 if you want a quality meal with robust flavours.

We sadly did not get a chance to try dessert. Many sweet treats were on the menu, but sadly, there was no cheese plate. I’m a sucker for smooth, creamy and robust cheese to wrap up a meal.

Bavatte main course at Lab 44

Service

The service at Lab 44 was a mix of slow but helpful. We allowed 2 and a half hours for our meal before our show, but we still had to ask twice for our food. We waited about an hour for our starter, then another hour for our main course. This meant we didn’t have time for dessert before our show.

The long wait time was due to a large group dining at the same time, which seemed to cause delays for other tables. In my opinion, a restaurant should plan better for large groups—either by not taking other reservations near the group’s time or having extra kitchen staff on hand.

Entry Way at Lab 44

However, the wait staff was very apologetic about the delays. They comped our drinks, which was much appreciated. The waiters and waitresses were friendly and did their best to compensate for the slow service.

So, while the wait times were frustrating, the staff’s helpful attitude still made it an enjoyable experience overall. The delays wouldn’t stop me from returning, though I’d hope for better planning around large groups next time.

Local Craft Beer

The drink menu at Lab 44 features an extensive selection of local craft beers from Hoop. As a resident of Zaandam, I highly enjoy the beers from Hoop and always recommend that visitors taste-test them themselves.

Local Craft Beer on the Terrace of Lab 44
Recently had the chance to enjoy a craft beer on the terrace at Lab 44

Outdoor Seating

Lab 44 has a large outdoor dining area that overlooks a grassy field, making it an excellent option for sunny days or for families with young children. The outdoor space has plenty of seating, allowing kids to run around and play after their meal. It’s a nice change of pace from being cooped up inside a restaurant.

Overall, the ample outdoor seating and proximity to the open field make Lab 44 a solid choice for meals with your family or for days when you want to enjoy the weather during your dining experience.

Overal Experience

Lab 44 provides an enjoyable overall experience for dining with friends and family. Still, there may be better spots for a quiet, romantic dinner. The ample, open industrial space creates an energetic vibe but can get quite noisy, especially when crowded. While the lively atmosphere is perfect for gathering with a group, couples looking for an intimate meal may need to be quieter for comfortable conversation.

The stylish interior and delicious food provide a fun night out with friends. Lab 44 is better suited for dinners with friends and family because of its social atmosphere and flavorful dishes.

Seating in main area of lab 44

Cost

The average cost per person for dinner with an appetizer, main course, dessert and three drinks is around €50-55 euros. A Pizza will run approximately 15 to 17 euros.

The prices seem fair, given the creative cuisine, extensive drink menu, and unique industrial atmosphere.

seating area in lab 44

Final Thoughts

Overall, I would return to Lab 44 despite the issues we experienced with the large group delaying service. The industrial-chic atmosphere provides a lively backdrop for dining with friends and family. While the noise level may make intimate conversations challenging, it lends an energetic vibe.

The food delivers on flavour, though our dining experience suffered some unfortunate timing issues. With a large group in the restaurant, service to other tables slowed. Despite staff attentiveness and comped drinks, we felt pressed for time to enjoy the dining experience before our show. I remain satisfied with Lab 44 but hope they implement better strategies for accommodating large groups to minimize delays.

With ample outdoor seating and a nearby field, Lab 44 offers a pleasant option for drinks or a meal on a sunny day. Kids will especially enjoy the space to run around. While the delays in food arrival were not optimal, it would not deter me from returning. Overall, I found the food and atmosphere worth another visit.

Entrance at Lab 44 in Zaandam

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Sarah

As a proud resident of Zaandam since 2010, I'm excited to share the beauty and charm of this city and surronding area. Join me on a journey to explore its picturesque views, meandering Zaan River, and rich history.
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