There really are so many fine manufacturers to choose from, and it truly is a hard choice to make. That said, I will have to go with Glock b/c I believe it is the best out of the box, off the shelf combat pistol on the market for the price. That isn't to say the Glock is a better pistol than the likes of Sig & HK, but for the money, you just can't buy a better pistol. I would say the following are my top picks:
Smith & Wesson (M&P)
Honorable mentions: HK, FN, Beretta, CZ...many fine others...