Dive? YEP. Worn interior and exterior? YEP. Waitresses that are "skitsy"? YEP. Must you go here? YEP.
According to signage this place has been operating since 1911 from a late 1800's Macedonia recipe passed down from the original owner (John?) by his mother. Eight brothers and sisters to boot.
Inside is worn out, but comfy. According to my lunch companion the two waitresses are sisters who have been doing the same thing for over 40 years. According to him they have not had another job in their whole lives. Our waitress was nice, but a bit frazzled. She walked up to the table and asked "What will you have to drink" to the three of us. No sooner had I uttered "I'll have a diet coke" she turned around and walked off. Seriously. She then returned about 5 minutes later and asked the same question. But this time she actually stayed to write it down. My companions got a bowl of the mild stew, and some type of open face turkey sandwich. the stew comes in Mild, Medium, and Hot. I was told that the hot was VERY hot (even says so on the menu). And the guy that told me this likes hot food. He got mild. I got the cabbage roll that is billed as having stew gravy poured over it. This is not exacly true. Yes it is stuffed cabbage (meat/rice filling), but it's not just the broth that comes atop this masterpiece. They actually ladled the medium stew (meat/taters/onion/celery) on top. It was like a bonus---BEST OF BOTH WORLDS.
The inside and outside of the building are full of "flavor". The waitress is a character, and the food is worth making a trip for. It was a great day in a great city.