Eating out in El Gouna can be a pleasant experience; especially on the Abu Tig Marina, where restaurants line their tables along the promenade by the marina, offering a cool breeze and a front view of the port.

Le Deauville is a well-established French restaurant that promises an authentic French atmosphere and cuisine. The outdoor terrace is protected by the restaurant’s signature dark blue window shades, as blue square pots carrying overflowing flowers box off the seating area from passersby. Inside, the white-washed walls are sporadically decorated with vintage French pop art, photos of celebrity patrons and a blackboard displaying Le Deauville’s wine list.

Le Deauville is managed by a French husband-and-wife team, who are clearly and undeniably French, whether it’s in the husband/chef’s greying moustache whiskers and nonchalant shrug or the wife/manager’s beady eyes that fixate on you unwaveringly when you plead and beg for a table in your best French. Somewhat reminiscent of a French headmistress, she will politely refuse your request for a table unless you don’t mind sitting indoors.

The menu is quite short and limited to five options per course, but each option is culinary perfection. Our appetiser of coquille (79LE) was a tiny serving of three poached scallops served with thin slices of pumpkin and carrots in a creamy Normandy bouillon. Though the scallops could have been grilled more on one side, the delicious sauce had us lapping up the last drop with the hot bread rolls brought to our table.

For a main course, try the salmon fillet with tarragon butter and shredded vegetables (99LE). Combined with a deliciously light white sauce, the salmon is perfectly cooked without losing its pinkness and fresh flavour, while the shredded vegetables blend well with the fish’s sweet spices. For a sweet-sour experience, try the Canard Orange (129LE), a very generous chunk of a duck’s leg with carrots, fried dauphine potatoes and a thick orange jus that doesn’t overpower the tender meat with too much sweetness.

The filet boeuf (119LE) came in two portions of medium-rare beef fillets cooked in a delectable grenobloise sauce that still has our taste palates crying days later. With a side of green salad and dauphine potatoes, this dish could easily be eaten again for breakfast, lunch and dinner the next day; that’s how good it was. The sauce’s buttery and red wine-like texture complemented the tenderly grilled and juicy meat perfectly, forcing this reviewer to pause and relish the process of chewing the meat, while the rest of the dinner party looked on bemusedly.

To top off the meal, we opted for the boring crème brûlée (49LE), which was a pleasant though very predictable creamy pudding with a thin layer of caramelised sugar on top. However, Le Deauville could do no wrong after its delicious cuisine, and we would highly recommend this restaurant for an elegant though somewhat pricy dinner: a meal for two excluding wine could easily reach over 400LE with taxes and service.