Frodo, I tend to agree with you on your selection of what a guy might call drinkable Canadian whiskeys. Gibson's 18 actually having an identifiable flavour. Tangle Ridge is almost over-mellow, with shades of whatever wine caske it is finished in being almost the only note of interest in the palate. Generally, canadian whiskeys, like Canadian Club (which is rough and thin) are mixed with coke or ginger ale, and make for good highballs. Crown Royal, Canadian Club Reserve, Gibsons... all drinkable, but very light and often one-note tunes. There are a few other products on the market - Century Reserve has some pretty interesting flavours, which as I understand, is due to the stuff basically being treated like Scotch after distillation.
Most Canadian Whiskeys are aged only 3 years, and the actual contents of the bottle is generally not posted.
To get back to the original idea on this thread, the Bourbon vs Scotch thing... I like both, and generally drink more bourbon in the winter, walking the dogs in the snow. Scotch goes all year round, and there's always an expression that goes down fine on any given evening.
I think people that experience scotch and like it before liking other whiskeys have a tough time going to lighter/sweeter/spicy/whateveryoucallthatfunnyflavourinIrish styles. Conversely, it's easy for a guy reared on rye and coke to get to scotch through Irish, and blends, and then get into the single malts. Malt whiskey has it's own rewards, obviously, and it's a matter of personal taste as to which other whiskeys one finds rewarding.
I don't particularly enjoy Irish, but I do like American and Canadian whiskeys. I'd like to get some of the Nikka or Suntory in me too, but can't find it.