...For my 1.065 OG beer that would be 8 weeks of lagering (minimum). To me that seems excessive, so what is the current consensus for lagering time?...
It's all personal preference in the end, but 8 weeks doesn't seem excessive at all.
For me 12 weeks minimum would be preferable.
The old Horlacher brewery in Easton, Pennsylvania (closed in 1978) for many years made a beer they called PERFECTION. I don't know what the original gravity was, but I do remember that it was higher ABV than most other "regular" beers. PERFECTION was lagered for 9 months (even though it most likely wasn't as high as OG 1.065).
And it's very well known that Ballantine aged their famous IPA (OG 1.075, 70-75 IBU) for a full year
before releasing it.
Of course, as far as homebrewing goes, any
beer is ready to drink when your
tastebuds say so. But the great character of a long aged brew can be something of a revelation...if you can hold out long enough.
What I took to doing years ago is to brew a quicker maturing "quaffer" beer to enjoy while time works it's magic on a heftier brew. It'm a good excuse to brew more often (not that I really need