Auckland's Daily Bread bakery has taken out his year's title for the Great NZ Hot Cross Bun competition, run by the Baking Industry Association of New Zealand.
For the past four years, the title had been won by bakers in Canterbury, but this year marked the first time the Auckland bakery has won, and the first-time Italian baker Lorenzo Romano had ever tried a traditional hot cross bun.
His award-winning buns are a special sourdough blend that was inspired by Italy's traditional Christmas fruit bread panettone, mixed with Colomba, a similar Italian Easter sweet bread. Their fruit candy mixture is made from Gisborne-grown oranges, sultanas, currants and special in-house paste and spices grounded themselves.
The bakery in Belmont told Stuff they currently produce 2400 hot cross buns each day but are planning to increase this following their win.
Timaru’s U Bake placed second in this year's competition, followed by third-place Copenhagen Bakery in Christchurch.