Note: I wrote this over a year ago. It may no longer work.
This is a quick overview:
- So you have your Excel spreadsheet with two columns: name and email addresses. Resave your spreadsheet as a .csv file.
- In Gmail, go to Contacts and then click on More and then Import.
- Select your CSV and import it.
- You will now see a list of all your email contacts.
- You can rename the contact list by selecting More again and then clicking on Rename Group.