Who is Merlin Griffiths? Channel 4’s First Dates barman and London pub owner – The Sun | The Sun

NERVOUS hopefuls are not only greeted by the friendly face of Fred Sirieix but by bartender Merlin Griffiths.

Mixing up whatever drink the daters require, Merlin has been a fan favourite on First Dates since the show began.

Who is Merlin Griffiths?

The king of cocktails, Merlin has been a bartender and mixologist for more than 20 years.

He was born in 1975 and grew up in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, being educated at Pate's Grammar School.

Merlin is well travelled and previously worked in India before he became the First Dates restaurant's resident mixologist.

When not working behind the Channel 4 bar, Merlin owns his own bar and restaurant, The Priory Tavern, in Kilburn, north-west London.

He has one child with partner Lucile who Merlin, a keen cyclist, met at a cocktail competition more than a decade ago.

He won the contest and bagged himself a girl in the process.

Lucile and Merlin took over The Priory Tavern in 2010, taking influences from classic British pub food and their time working in Canada and America.

The couple's pub won Regional Cellar Keeper of the Year in 2015.

more on first dates


Everything you need to know about the new series of First Dates


How to apply for First Dates – application process explained


My date sent me a text meant for his buddy– what he really thought of me was bad


Inside Fred Sirieix's secret romance with fiancée – & dating tips he swears by

Merlin was diagnosed with bowel cancer in August 2021 and needed life saving surgery in April 2022.

After the cancer battle, Merlin launched the first no alcohol bar with Harrogate Spring Water at Royal Ascot 2022.

In July 2022, the star was back in hospital due to complications with his previous surgery.

He took to Instagram to tell fans: "Last time for a while I hope. Minor day surgery for some complications with my anastomosis following a Low Anterior Resection in April.

"The #CancerTreatment journey is long, and often painful and ugly. I couldn't do it without my family either. #BowelCancerAwareness #getchecked."


What does Merlin do on First Dates?

Merlin is the barman at the First Dates restaurant, and normally the first port of call for the nervous diners.

After maitre d' Fred Sirieix offers the daters a seat at the bar, Merlin makes them their perfect drink – while quizzing them about their choice of date.

He tends to have banter with the customers, some of whom have even drawn comparisons between the friendly face and Rowan Atkinson as Mr Bean.



ITV to launch Love Island forsingletons in 40s & 50s with normal bodies


Love Island star Billy Brown’s family demand he is sent home from ‘toxic’ villa

Merlin has been a cast staple of the show since it launched in 2013 and has appeared in show spin offs too.

For many daters, he is a source of calming comfort before their blind date arrives.

    Source: Read Full Article