It starts of as a dusty, fruity, polished leather. Yes, it did remind me a bit of Tuscan Leather. The blend seems simple, there is not much else going on and it's a pleasant smell. After a couple of hours I am starting to smell a very tame and polite oud note, without changing the smell path it's on. Nice smell overall, but not the highest level of blend/ingredients as the line implies.
This kicks off with that Givaudan oud that was everywhere a few years ago, paired up with dark pine. Given time, some musks soften everything up. It's a pleasant combination, like a fuzzy rendering of trees and forest mulch with just a pinch of rubbery oud for weirdness and a pinch of greens for lift. Unfortunately, it dries down to a rather commonplace aquatic "woody amber" chemical that just smells cheap.
So, what could have been a thumbs up ends up with an unenthusiastic neutral rating. In addition to the cheap, lame base, I can't really review a scent like this without commenting it's simply not possible to get as excited about this in 2017 as it would have been in 2008. This is essentially a fusion of the best parts of Killian's Pure Oud and CDG's Avignon over a cheap drydown, so it kind of feels like someone just wanted one of these types of perfumes in the D&G Exclusif repertoire. Anyway, the topnotes are great, but the sad base and lack of originality drags it down...
Initial spray had an amber and incense combo which lasted for about 10 minutes until the synthetic oud (not bad at all) kicked in. Pretty much linear from there (also not a bad thing). Not worth the price IMO, but a nice fragrance that I would purchase if the price was lower. 7.5/10
Good, intriguing fragrance, but doesn't stand out from the crowdI grabbed a 50ml bottle of this from a friend in the industry for £85 recently, and as it retails at £170 I snapped it up as a blind buy. Dolce e Gabbana Velvet Desert Oud is relatively new on the market at the time of writing, having been released in Britain in August 2013. I think it's only available through Harrod's, Harvey Nichols and DandG shops here in the UK. First off, the opening is terrific - it's a soft, sultry, woody incense caress for the first twenty minutes, very classy and sophisticated. There are hints of a smoky amber in there too. It really is a delight. After the top notes evaporate, the heart starts to come into focus, and the oud starts to wind its way around your senses. This is not the elegant, charming oud of, say, Maison Francis Kurkdjian - it's more towards the "barnyard" end of the oud scale, and it very, very closely resembles Acqua di Parma's Colonia Intensa Oud. On my skin they are almost identical, with the only real difference to my nose being that the AdP is more intense. This is not a bad thing for me personally, since the Colonia Intensa Oud smells foul on me and gives me a headache. In Dolce and Gabbana's Velvet Desert Oud it's basically the same note, in fact I would not be at all surprised to find the oud is from the exact same (synthetic?) source. It's pretty much a one note show from here onwards, with just a slight smoky muskiness coming in on the fadeout. It's long lasting and projection is good - I can still smell it on my clothes at the end of an 8-hour shift at work. The packaging, by the way, is absolutely exquisite. The cap has a gorgeous thin soft-touch layer of dense foam around it, which gives a lovely tactile feel of quality when you open the bottle. The smoked gradient of the glass is very fine, and there is a very classy gold coloured metal plate on the front, with the DandG logo and the name of the fragrance pressed into it. The fragrance is a deep gold colour and it seems to resonate inside the shaped chamber made by that smoked glass. It's a fantastic piece of work. So...overall this is a good addition to my evening/winter fragrances. There is no way I would pay £170 for a 50ml bottle; it's just not "wow" enough nor does it distinguish itself significantly from other similar fragrances on the market, particular the aforementioned AdP Colonia Intensa Oud. If you like the latter, you'll definitely like this, as the middle and base notes are so strikingly similar. The opening notes are the best part of Velvet Desert Oud; think Andy Tauer's l'Air du Desert Marocain with a touch of Illuminum Amber.Pros: Exquisite packaging. Great initial notesCons: Turns into Colonia Intensa Oud clone"