A Bike to Suit Me

AWaggers Posts: 2
edited August 2008 in Road beginners
I am about to empty my wallet on a new bike after a long time off of the saddle. I'm keen to get cycling 3-4 times a week around where I live which is rolling countryside with some steep hills to boot. I want a bike that will standup to winter but give me the ability to go aggressive when I want.

I've been looking at several bikes and ideally want a 105 chainset or better. Focus bikes look good value for money but I don't know whether those bikes are more suited to racing than the more sportive cycling I will probably be doing most of the time. Also, is it worth paying extra for a carbon frame when I'm not likely to take this competitively.

Any thoughts will be appreciated.