To be honest with you whoever denies the fact that they are not nervous when it comes to a first date is an out an out liar as everyone wants to give out a great impression on a first meeting. I suppose you could go as far too say that date fears can last quite a while not just on the first meeting. They tend to go one one another have become comfortable with each others company.
I have always found that the best way to make my partner feel as comfortable as possible is to be literally as humorous as I can, not to the point of acting a fool but to make sure she has a great time. Understandably the whole point is to impress especially from the male point of view as the last thing you would want is for your date to think that you are a bore.
One great little tip is to go on a first date and make sure you are both in new territory meaning the restaurant is new for both of you or the bar or wherever you go is new as this can bring on a lot more conversation. Being on your “home turf” so to speak is not the best of scenarios for your partner so find somewhere new and exciting for you both to discover.