i will have to say my favorite ff mag is whatevers on the rack at the library. that being said, ff magazines are a nice forum for new gear and advertisements, with some great info on pin pointed fisheries and regional politics. i have a nice lot of books at home that have all the real info i will ever need. so yes, ff mags are fun and a good read, but im not buying a magazine for a couple of meaning articles.
The only fishing magazine that I've subscribed to in the last 10 or so years is On the Water, a regional, mostly salty, all tackle rag.
I do have substantial collections of older magazines including more than 25 years worth of Fly Fisherman, 10 years plus of American Angler plus a number of others.
When Art Scheck was the editor of American Angler (or Fly Tyer), they were the best, otherwise it's been Fly Fisherman year in, year out
I'm kind of partial to two publications. American Angler is usually packed with useful info, as is Flyfishing & Tying Journal. I'm especially fond of Flyfishing & Tying Journal since they recently published my article on spring creek tactics in their Winter 2011 issue on newsstands now (I know a shameful plug ).
I get Trout, American Rifleman (switched this year from American Hunter), DU magazine, F&S, and Northwest Flyfishing.
I hinted at a gift subscription to Drake, but it didn't happen.
I pick up a lot of the above titles if the articles look like something interesting to me.
I also like Grey's Sporting Journal and Shooting Sportsman.
If I had to pick just one, it would be NWFF: it's my retirement plan.
I really don't bother with magazines as they just tend to clutter up my house... I can't answer directly. But I would say, spend some time at your favorite rag house (be it barnes and noble, some local treasure, etc.) and spend an evening perusing the fly fishing mags. Pic the one you like best and let her know.
It all depends on what you want out of the mag. Sure-- it's fun to thumb through and dream of places, and gear.... It's also fun to brouse the newest Cabelas catalog....
As for good writing and good art/ illustrations-- I enjoy Grey's Sporting Journal-- (Not Fly fishing specific-- more 'nature lifestyle' specific.)
Two magazines that I really like but don't have too many of in my collection are the Atlantic Salmon Journal, the publication of the Atlantic Salmon Federation and the The American Fly Fisher from the American Museum of Fly Fishing
You need to be members of each organization to receive the magazine but well worth it if you're interested