one of the best finish's I’ve found recently is the woodoc range available from Phil Irons
there's 3 gloss levels available matt, satin and gloss (sold as Woodoc 5, 10 and 20) and there all very hard wearing and easy to apply
The glossiest & hardest coating/finishing I've ever come across, was furan resin, used as a sand binder in some foundries. The guy who used it, did so on his chisel and plane handles etc. a Patternmaker distinguishing his tools from others. Lasted for years and a quick wipe brought them up as new. But I doubt you want to go to that extreme.
I always finished some of my pieces with a type of french polish, burnished at high speed on the lathe.
To do this I applied shellac shellac to a wad of rags which I then wrapped in a lint free rag, to this I applied a little machine oil. At first I found the shellac a bit sticky, as soon as the oil was gone it would bind to the wood surface, that's where the high speed comes in. High speed and light pressure both applies the shellac with the friction setting the gloss - that is to say you need to adjust the pressure on the rubber (rag/wad) according to how loaded it is. Once you have built up enough dried coats, sanding between, the rubber should be almost dry and at high speed you can burnish just about the glossiest off finishes...bosshogg
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