Since I’m uninstalling Ubuntu soon, I’m just trying out a bunch of DEs right now.
Haven’t used Gnome 3 since Mint 12, and it’s come along pretty nicely.
Still a bit bloated, and not sure if I’d use it all the time, but it sure does look really nice.
Gnome 3 Doesn’t have to be bloated. Part of that bloated “feel” comes from having all the extra packages for Unity and other DE’s. If you’re interested I’ve heard good things about Ubuntu Gnome Shell Remix. Quidsup has a video previewing UGSR on YouTube.
Also you may be interested in Ubuntu’s Minimal Installation. Which installs just like Debian using the no frills text installer. It is however easier to install than Arch Linux.