I like bourbon, because if I buy from the middle shelf and up I will get something I enjoy, and if you do your research, you can buy from the bottom shelf if you're broke and get something consistently palatable. I find for me, there's more flavor in bourbon than say, Canadian whiskey or even Irish whiskey (don't flame me Irish lovers, some like Latakia, some don't).
When I first decided to try Scotch, I knew I'd hate it because it would be an acquired taste, but on the recommendation of the scotch guy at the liquor store, bought a 375ml bottle of bottom shelf blend Scoresby, and it was love at first sip. The thing with scotch for me is it's a crap shoot. It's not like I've ever heard of Llanfairpwllgwyn before and scotch seems to vary much more than bourbon. When I buy bourbon, I'm going for safe, if scotch, I'm feeling adventurous.
I took a wine tasting class, (at the Wine Nazis on Oak Lawn), and the guy was a complete snob, and when he found out most of liked light German white wines (think Liebfraumilch, like Black Tower or Blue Nun), he shook his head at us and told us when we became 'sophisticated', we would only drink red wine. But the jerk ended up being right. Make mine a Cabernet or Merlot, ribeye, mashed potatoes and gravy with a side salad.
Beer is your friend. Period. It can be used to improve any situation, with any company. A good example is, if I was out fishin' with lonestar, and we were drinking his damned Natural Light, for that situation that 'beer' would be the tastiest beer in the world. Only beer can do that. Beer is your friend.
After those four there is a HUGE dropoff for me for anything else. Tequila has it's place I guess, and/but that place always includes girls. Chilled vodka has a place - when I'm playing a WWII sub game and pretending I stole it from the Russians. Rum has no place for me. The only good gin is the one left on the shelf so you can buy some real bourbon. I've had some good times with martinis, like when you need to get happy quick at a bar, but make mine vodka, up, filthy (I should not have to tell you, No Vermouth).
Tawny port has a place that involves a good cigar. Tuaca has a place if you want to wake up in jail. Frangelico has a place if you're trying to convince a girl that all alcohol doesn't taste like crap. And even Everclear has a place, because it will clean your pipe.
For me, it's bourbon, scotch, beer and red wine. All else pales in comparison.