I have been looking up bootstrapping circuits. The concept makes sense, but I am afraid I just don't see the use. Can someone give a practical situation where one would be designing and decide this is a better option than anything else? The general case seems to be a high side FET gate drive.
It is an easy method of allowing N-channel high-side drive where 100% (or near that) duty cycles are not required. You don't need extra circuitry for a charge pump. For example, if your high side FET is on a 100V rail, you're looking at generating a 110V "charge pumped" voltage from some other supply. Or you can use a bootstrap based circuit to "add" the 10V using a capacitor and a suitably rated driver circuit.
It is not necessarily "the best option" as you put it. For example, for applications requiring 100% duty cycle, you can't use this method (since the bootstrap capacitor is charged during the PWM off time). It happens to be an easy, readily used option that you can use for switching circuits.