The Bachelor Season 16 Premiere Date: Revealed!

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Break out the wine, roses, ridiculous group dates and emotional baggage.

Beloved Bachelorette runner-up Ben Flajnik will begin his starring turn as The Bachelor when ABC premieres its 16th season of the reality romance show January 2.

The 29-year-old California winemaker says he's been in love three times in his life, but it wasn't until The Bachelorette finale that he proposed (to Ashley Hebert).

She turned him down and got engaged to JP Rosenbaum, but Ben has turned the corner - and will turn the tables this winter as the man doling out the roses.

Ben Flajnik on The Bachelorette

Ben Flajnik loves crab fishing, golf, skateboarding, playing piano and surfing. One must-have trait in his soulmate? A love of Scotch ... his Jack Russell Terrier.

Taking the show seriously enough to be crushed by Ashley's rejection, and likable to pretty much everyone, Ben was a natural fit to succeed Brad Womack.

"They think he'll be ratings gold!" an ABC insider said.

"Everyone wants to realize the man he really is," Bachelor host and pimp in charge Chris Harrison has said of Flajnik. "He's in the right place to find love."

Ben Flajnik as The Bachelor: Good choice?

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Ben Flajnik Biography

Thumbs Up From Ben
Ben Flajnik is a 28-year-old winemaker from Sonoma, Calif. Rather than his affiliation with Evolve Wines, Ben is best known for coming in... More »
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Ben Flajnik