Since taking over ownership of the Ringside Cafe in September, Adrian Rosu has made some changes, but he also made sure to preserve the bar's historic charm. The Pearl Alley staple dates back to 1897 - it was a speakeasy during Prohibition - and today its antique interior still evokes that mystique.

Since taking over ownership of the Ringside Cafe in September, Adrian Rosu has made some changes, but he also made sure to preserve the bar's historic charm. The Pearl Alley staple dates back to 1897 - it was a speakeasy during Prohibition - and today its antique interior still evokes that mystique.

Rosu, who's worked for others in the restaurant industry for years, is excited to have his own venture.

"In the back of my mind I always wanted to do my own thing, and when the opportunity came up to get one of the most historic places in Columbus, I couldn't resist," he said.

One of the changes was bringing in chef Roderick Nix from the Hilton Columbus at Easton to develop the menu. The renovations started by remaking Ringside's famous burgers - still named after legendary pugilists - with 100-percent Angus beef.

While a few of the boxer burgers have been replaced by options like a portobello sandwich and a host of chicken sandwiches, favorites like the three-quarter-pound Ali ($11) and the Smokin' Joe BBQ Bacon Burger ($8) are still knockouts.

The Latin-tinged Oscar De La Hoya burger ($8), with red pepper and a roasted garlic aioli, is a new favorite. Another addition, Roderick's White Chili ($4.95 bowl) - made with slow-simmered pulled chicken - is quickly becoming one of Ringside's most popular dishes.

The decor has been updated with freshly painted golden hues that complement the vintage woodwork and stained glass windows. Rosu also updated the downstairs dining room, to create more room for the lunch crowd and to host private parties.

Rosu extended Ringside's hours to a 1 a.m. and added an afternoon and late-night menu of munchies to complement the traditional menu.

Behind the bar, premium drafts include Goose Island's 312 and Honkers Ale, Bare Knuckle Stout and Shocktop ($4). There are also a number of bottled domestics ($2.75), and crafts, imports and four options from Great Lakes Brewing Co. ($3.25).

Even though Rosu updated the space, its past stays on his mind. "My biggest reason for buying this place is, it's destined to be here another 100 years," he said, "and I want to be a part of history."