It took more than 500 days to bring the 1732 masterpiece back to its old glory. The long restoration works were carried out by a team of 120 persons: 36 workers, 27 technicians, 10 security men, 21 designers and 26 restorers. And the result is simply magnificent.
Rome’s most famous fountain is made of travertine, marble, bricks, stuccoes and metals and each of these materials had to be treated separately with specific actions. The works entailed more than pure restoration: a video-surveillance system was set up along with an anti-pigeon kit, and a new lighting design by Rome’s utility company ACEA makes this landmark even more beautiful.
The water that flows in it comes through the ancient Roman aqueduct of the Virgin Water, made by Marcus Agrippa, from the year 19 B.C. The more than two thousand year old aqueduct is the only one still working among the eleven that supplied the capital of the Roman Empire.
The overall cost of the operation is around 2.2 mln € (2.5 mln $) generously paid by the Roman fashion house Fendi (see their Roman shop’s crazy Christmas decorations here) which is planning to invest in similar projects in Rome with their Fendi for Fountains initiative. The next ones should be the Acqua Paola on the Janiculum Hill, the Pincio hill’s fountain and one not far from the Vatican, in Piazzale degli Eroi.
Yesterday’s inauguration also featured the arrest of two men who tried to steal the coins thrown by tourists eager to visit Italy’s capital soon. Two Romanian guys who didn’t know that also their Roman predecessor “D’Artagnan” was eventually caught by the police….
Quite similar to Sicily’s arancini, supplì is a quintessential Roman deli. It’s a fried ball of rice with meat and tomato sauce and a filling of melted mozzarella. Well this is the most common of the current versions of supplì.
When it started to be included in cuisine books, it had a bigger list of ingredients. It was the 1920s, the same time when a certain James Joyce was working in Rome as a bank clerk and really enjoyed this street food, the perfect snack between lunch and dinner.
The perfect match for supplì is beer (like pizza, by the way).
You can eat your supplì at take-away pizza outlets, groceries and restaurants.
You won’t find them north of Rome, while south of Rome they are arancini and they have different ingredients, a bigger size and a more spherical shape.
Here are some of the best places in town.
Pizzarium. Maybe the best take away pizza in town. Their supplì are also at the top. Their main feature is that they are micro-pasta dishes in supplì undercover: from spaghettoni (thick spaghetti) with tomato and basil to handmade tagliatelle with beef and taleggio.
00100 Pizza. Cult take-away with a wide range of different kinds of supplì on offer: from the broccoli and sausage to hering and dark beer…
Arcangelo. Old recipe with chicken giblets, sausage and a mix of pecorino and parmesan.
Gatta Mangiona. Very famous pizzeria, always full. Their amatriciana (tomato and bacon) supplì or the norcina (sausage, peas, mushroom without tomato) ones are a must.
Rosticcerì. Modern, sophisticated grocery which also has many variations of supllì, like the one with saffron, the cacio e pepe and the mozzarella and squid.
Angelina. Pizzeria-restaurant witha very good meat. Their supplì are crispy and light coloured/fried
Franchi. One of the best groceries in town, we also love their white arancini, a Roman version of the Sicilian one, with rice, butter, mozzarella and pepper.