Sitting almost alone above the train tracks that run beneath the Greater Columbus Convention Center, Char Bar is a no-frills spot perfect for anyone looking to escape the pomp, circumstance and crowds found nearby in the Short North and Arena District.

Sitting almost alone above the train tracks that run beneath the Greater Columbus Convention Center, Char Bar is a no-frills spot perfect for anyone looking to escape the pomp, circumstance and crowds found nearby in the Short North and Arena District.

Well, to be fair, there are a few frills in this wonderful watering hole: friendly staff, a nice belly-up bar, a small patio out back and a comfortable room to relax. This is a place where regulars are treasured and weird quirks have staying power.

My three favorite:

* Decaying, possibly haunted, basement piano: The instrument has been rumored to play by itself at night, even though there are no keys. Bartenders chalk up ghost stories to late-night fatigue and intoxication. Yet the aging instrument bears the name Krueger. As in Freddie Krueger. Coincidence?

* Random knickknacks: Above the bar you'll find a miniature figurine of an American Indian, beer mirrors and an inflatable glove that commemorates Budweiser's presence at the 1993 World Series.

* Men's room chalkboard: While relieving yourself, feel free to share recent news, predictions for sporting events and the promiscuity of your enemy's girlfriend. Fresh chalk is provided.

Even if you're not into the oddball artifacts compiled within this cozy, laid-back space, simply sit down, play songs on a deep, eclectic jukebox and enjoy a Long Island iced tea, a potent concoction the staff considers a specialty.

"They're what this bar is known for," said Tim Brown, a two-year veteran of the tending staff. "We sell a ridiculous number of them."

The recipe is simple - lots of liquor - and the other fare follows suit. Things like double-fudge Godiva martinis are not an option, so instead choose from well drinks, draft beer and a bizarre stock of bottles.

Like, for example, Lone Star.

"It's not what I'd call good beer, but there will be times when guys come in and that's all they drink," Brown said. "They'll just wipe it out."

And 25.4-ounce cans of Foster's stuffed into a bottom refrigerator space.

"Yeah," Brown explained, "we have a regular that drinks those."

Need to Know: Why's it called Char Bar?

Actually, if you look at your receipt, it's called Charbert's Bar. The official name is a combination of the names of two brothers, Charles and Robert Gordon, who founded the bar. Its handle was shortened over time.