Aaron (33) from Dublin says he is a 9.9 out of 10. But we reckon he may have been reconsidering that rating after he set his eyes on his date, Judy (31) from Limerick.
Aaron admits the most important thing to him is good looks and while he says he knows it might sound a bit shallow, “it’s not”. Fair enough.
He seems very confident entering the First Dates restaurant, but his nerves set in once he sees his date fitness model, Judy. It turns out a Limerick lady in red is enough to stop this Dub in his tracks.
Judy asks her date if he’s nervous. He stumbles over his words slightly but says: “no,” before adding: “I am kind of now. I didn’t realise you were going to be this gorgeous.”
Over dinner, Aaron looks like his eyes might pop out of his head when Judy says she’s off to represent Ireland in a fitness modelling competition in the States. When she mentions she will be wearing a bikini, it looks as though his head might just explode.
“I feel underdressed,” he says.
While Judy is in the loo, Aaron admits he’s a bit “shell-shocked”. “I’m fairly cocky so I wasn’t really expecting someone that pretty,” he tells maitre d’ Mateo.
After the date, he admits he went in “cocky as hell” but was stuck for words when he saw Judy.
He gives her a rose before they’re asked whether they would like to see each other again and unfortunately for Aaron, a rose was not enough to get a yes from Judy.
“I thought that it was a really, really nice date. You’re an absolute gent but I just didn’t feel like I wanted to go on another date after tonight,” she says. “But I really did enjoy the date.”
Kseniia (30) is a little nervous when she makes her way into the restaurant. The Ukrainian moved to Dublin six months before the war started and after seeing a clip of First Dates Ireland online, she promised herself she would give it a go if she ever moved here.
Now living in Dublin, she wants someone who makes her feel like she’s at home. She likes someone who is intelligent and with more degrees than we can keep track of, Mike (31) from Louth seems like a good match.
Kseniia worked in casinos on cruise ships but now, she’s in recruitment and is trying her best not to go into interviewer mode.
She opens up about the devastating impact of the war at home and how it made her realise that she was ready to meet someone.
But it seems interview mode is tough to break and Mike struggles to read her. “Not a clue,” he says when asked if he thinks she likes him.
“There was one point where she was eating her salmon and then the next thing, she was looking at the floor grimacing as I was saying something, and turns out she had a salmon bone in her mouth,” he says. “I thought I’d said something terrible.”
But surprisingly (or unsurprisingly?) Kseniia agrees she would like to see him again.
She’s happy there will be a second date but she’s “still playing hard to read”.
“Apparently that works,” she says.
Dressed in blue jeans and a pink puffy top, Ava (18) from Louth has a brief moment to fangirl over Mateo before making her way over to the bar. Her type is tall, into fitness but isn’t like “a brick wall”. Speaking of walls, personal trainer Daniel (22) says he could talk to one no bother.
Mayo native Daniel admits he listens to a lot of ‘girly’ music and asks his date what her favourite Taylor Swift song is. (His is Love Story, if you were curious). He describes himself as “nerdy” while Ava says she’s “a big dork”.
While eating their dessert outside on a couch, the pair share plenty of laughs, especially when Daniel explains that he prefers savoury food and “doughy stuff” — like doughnuts.
He asks Ava what her love language is and seems thrilled that it’s physical touch. Ava explains how if she likes someone, she’s very tactile. The minute those words leave her mouth, we can’t help but notice she is leaning pretty far away from her date.
Daniel insists on getting the bill because his mam would kill him if he didn’t. “You can get the next one,” he says.
Alas, that day may never come as it’s a no from Ava to a second date. “On a romantic level, I’d have to say no,” she says, and Daniel doesn’t look so happy. But as he put it himself, “sure what can you do?”
“Doused” in Ralph Lauren cologne, Caolán (31) from Wexford waits patiently at the bar for his date, David (39) from Dublin.
Make-up artist Caolán warns us that if he shares a lot, we know he likes the person and he’s very open with his date about his family and how accepting they have been.
While David is in the loo, Daniel says he’s feeling “50/50” and that Caolán isn’t his usual type. Meanwhile in the toilet after accidentally splashing water on his pants, Caolán is sending a voice note to a friend and says his date is “really nice”.
When it comes to the bill, they decide to “cut the bullshit and split it”.
Having had a couple of deep chats, Caolán says he’s not sure if Daniel fancied him as much as he liked him and, to be honest, we can’t read him either. But, they both agree to see each other romantically again.
To be specific, Caolán says: “I would,” while Daniel gives a “yeah,” seeming slightly unsure. They both laugh before Daniel clarifies: “Another date would be nice if you’re up to it.”
They share a hug — because they’re saving the kiss for the second date.