When this Surry Hills restaurant celebrated its 12th birthday in August last year, it threw a set dinner featuring its most famous dishes. Along with some that have been on the menu since day one, such as the fish fingers and the banana split, were the hot cross buns. And for good reason.

Bodega’s take on the Easter treat is savoury, interesting and immensely delicious.

The house-made milk buns – which are made with rye flour mixed with ground cinnamon, allspice and ginger – are sliced in half and filled with folded Cape Grim corned beef, kimchi and a dollop of smoked-oyster mayonnaise (which is made by blending a tin of smoked oysters with egg yolk, vinegar and mustard).

It sounds like it shouldn’t be good, but it really is. “I think it works so well because the flavours are familiar, just paired in a surprising way,” says restaurant manager Coco Cox.

“It ticks all the boxes: sweet, salty, sour,” adds head chef Oliver Hassig. “It would be nothing without the kimchi. It brings the umami.”

Bodega’s hot cross buns are only available over the Easter weekend. It’s open Good Friday and Easter Saturday from 6pm.