The contender: Smith & Wesson 952
In your hand: This 9mm is heavy and so there was little recoil. The wooden handgrips added a nice feel. The magazine holds 9 rounds, and with one in the chamber a total of 10. The design is reminded me of a 1911, but aesthetically, this handgun is gorgeous.
On the range: Sighting was great. Myopic me was able to put all 10 rounds within a 5 inch circle at 10 yards. This is the best shooting I've done yet.
Overall: Smith & Wesson is a venerable American handgun company located in Springfield, MA. The S&W is a close runner-up to the Kimber Target II 9mm I raved about back here.