IMO, based on your statements, I think you'll do better with the V-Strom. I love my AT, but I ride 50% of the time off-road on technical stuff. I have to agree with reviewers when it comes to the on-road ability/capabilities of the AT. I have a roadracing background and find the on-road manners of the AT to be "okay". When the AT gets pushed hard on-road, front-end feel gets vague compared to the Super Tenere and XCx I previously owned.
On occasion, I ride with a guy with an older V-Strom (I'm not sure of the size as I'm not real familiar with the V-Strom line) and when we do forest service roads, fire roads, and dirt roads, it does just fine. These aren't necessarily smooth or maintained either.
I think you'll be happier with a bike thats more street oriented...
Well I think just the opposite from you, I'd argue that you would need a high level of road racing skills, to be annoyed by the front because being not skilled in racing, I can't feel this while riding harder than I was on a MT-09 and since 3 months none of my friends could stick to my back Wheel, only KTM sometimes burn me.
Then in reverse, the guy being 70 and saying the back roads in his country being that bad, i'd say it's saffer to bet on the AT than on the DL, making off roading that easier and maybe less risks of dropping the bike, which I would like at 70.
I totally loved the big motocross kind of feel on the road, better than knee dragging and thought I could develop my off-road skills with the AT, because that's where I have less background, so bought the AT and not the DL.
Also let me say I really dislike DCT and find it boring on road, but maybe the OP would be better with DCT off road !