Agreed on Scotch. I like good bourbon, but no comparison for me. Single malt rocks.
Disagreed. I like bourbon. You guys can keep the scotch. I never found the taste for the stuff. And I realley detest peat, in whiskey and beer.
I keep Scotch in the cabinet for my father and for guests. It rarely, if ever, crosses my palate. I try to keep one bottle of lowland and one highland.
Eagle Rare is good stuff. I can get behind that. One of my new favorites is Noah's Mill (did I say that already), but it's not $20 bourbon.
Regarding "Entry level": which to me means no wild, odd or unique characteristics reserved for the discerning whiskey drinker's palate. I want to work myself up to being a connoisseur.
As far as bourbon, you won't get much wild or odd flavors. If it's got rye in the bill, it will be sharper. The Wellers are wheated whiskeys, IIRC, as are most of the Willets. Willet tends to be pricier. I believe the wheated whiskeys may be smoother. Not positive, but I think Makers is wheated.
If you want to try Scotch, I'd go with a highland whiskey. My recollection is they are smoother, less peaty, not briney. But they still have the problem of tasting like Scotch. Or maybe start with a blend, rather than jumping right on the single malts. Johnny Walker is mass produced and most single malt people will turn up their noses, but it might be a decent starting point. Scotch is an acquired taste which I do not intend to acquire.