i'd say drupal is better
its extremely powerful and gives you greater freedom and is more flexible compared to joomla
its said to have a learning curve, but for someone starting from scratch joomla poses a learning curve too so why not go for drupal which is definitely better, also there is a great community if ur stuck
drupal has very few good looking themes, so you might have to code available ones to suit your requirements or buy premium ones, if you cant do that, do check out the themes before you start.
Joomla is the more popular of the two... since Joomla is easier to manage, most inexperienced, clueless noobs choose to build their sites using it. Unfortunately, Joomla also has more vulnerabilities - it's hacker-favorite.
My recommendation goes for Drupal - it's solid, stable and secure (cons - slightly harder to manage than Joomla, 3rd-party plugin/theme etc. support is less than that of Joomlas). The white house is built on Drupal - need I say more?
drupal has not many plugin option that a beginner can handle , plus it not show the full article all together , it is some thing like new publishing site where most head lines are viewable. but joomla is like other blogging site.
Personally, I think that a true beginner should start with Wordpress (I'm talking about those who are already past Cutenews, FanUpdate, etc.), then pass onto Joomla and Drupal; in any case, the best way is to try both and see which you find more manageable and fitting the site you plan to have.
Drupal is always preferable. If you really want to stand out from others, you need to go one step ahead. Drupal is more powerful. It is just like controlling a powerful car. Understand it, and you both(drupal and u) will zoom forward.