We are an independent, full-service coffee shop with a spectrum of expressive wines and beers. Housed in a quaint 1904 building with exposed brick and easy vibes, Liquid State is at the Hillsborough Street/Oberlin Road intersection. We service a diverse area at the triple point of NCSU, Cameron Park and University Park neighborhoods. Straddling the line of academia and familiarity, we invite experimentation with simply prepared drinks from quality ingredients, small estate wines, and choice beers.
Having grown up in Laos, the owner, Sy Sourisak, was exposed to coffee at an early age. His grandparents grew pineapples and bananas, and around the periphery of their plantation, robusta coffee plants delineated the property lines. And as the cherries ripened, the red berries were hand picked and washed in cool running streams. The beans were later spread over the terrace and dried under the Equatorial sun. The rhythm of every morning started with the sounds of seeds rustling on an iron skillet. The waft of the deepening char of the roasted beans, the crunching sounds from hand-cranked grinding, and the sweet aromas of the brewed coffee. It is family lore that in addition to mother’s milk and water, coffee was the third drink the children tasted.
The coffee thread continued to weave through Sy’s adulthood. He lived the cafe life and wherever he went. Sy sought the local coffee shops that infused the sense of place and flavors into their offerings. This was especially true during his time abroad and while traveling in his eight years as an executive in education technology companies. It was in one of these quaint and crowded coffee shops that he ventured courage and shared seating with a beautiful stranger, Emily, who later became his wife. And having had a four year stint in the coffee industry and three years in the wine business in his earlier careers prior to finishing college, the marriage of experiences culminated in Liquid State. We invite you to visit.