Half Man, Half Bike: The Life of Eddy Merckx, Cycling's Greatest Champion by William Fotheringham:
The king of cycling was certainly not mechanical or robotic in his diet and lifestyle. He did not follow the lines drawn up by Fausto Coppi and Louison Bobet, who were legendarily strict in their diets and lifestyles. He was not an ascetic semimonk like Gimondi. He was fond of a beer. Smoking was actually recommended by some team doctors to wind down after a race; the Faema doctor advised Merckx to have the odd one so he would occasionally nip into Roger Swerts’s room to get a cigarette, Swerts being the team’s smoker. If anything, he veered more towards the bon vivant lifestyle of Jacques Anquetil, although without excess of Master Jacques, said Van Buggenhout. Vittorio Adorni came across Merckx and his teammates knocking back beers in his hotel room one evening during the 1968 Giro.