I'm rather new to the high end bourbon scene.
I would slog away at Beam, Daniels (which is a bourbon but they like to differentiate it from bourbon on account of their filtering process...thanks wikipedia), Evan Williams, Wild Turkey and Early Times (aack!) during college.
Then quality was of little importance to quantity.
I've taken a liking to Bulleit Kentucky Bourbon
It's spicy, smokey and cleaner (to me) than any of those mentioned above. A fifth is 30 bucks. I guess that's not high end.
I have also taking a liking to single malt scotch whisky and am just starting into that. I splurged on a $180 bottle of The Macallan 18 year SMS. Have yet to break that one open. I'm going on a fishing trip in April and will crack it then.
So I'm definitely interested in reading more about bourbon (American) and whisky.